Looking for a Professional Air Quality Monitor?

Being able to cheaply monitor PM2.5 and other dangerous fine particles can improve indoor air quality and environmental protection. However, finding the best home air quality monitor can be a challenge as not all devices are equally capable of detecting all volatile organic compounds, such as dangerous gas like formaldehyde, for example. For many, the most ideal way is with a connected indoor air quality monitor, which can give homeowners actionable advice when problems may arise, eg when VOC reach levels harmful to their health.

What features should people look for

As indoor air quality monitors have traditionally been used for industrial hygiene purposes, only recently have they started to gain attention from the general public, with many still unsure how to monitor air pollution in their homes. Not all track nitrogen dioxide and carbon dioxide. The majority of IAQ monitors are used to detect VOCs and airborne particles, as well as humidity and temperature. Most of these devices work by using light scattering technology, which can measure the particulate matter in the air, however, some devices have more accurate sensors and data processing than others, according to a study from the National Berkeley Laboratory.


IAQ monitors are becoming increasingly affordable for use in the home environment. That said, prices of different IAQ monitors can still range significantly from as low as $117 to as high as $3,281, with some even requiring annual subscription fees for their service.

Smart home connectivity

Many IAQ monitors can display a wide variety of information via mobile apps to alert users when their environmental health is at risk from airborne substances like volatile organic compounds. These alerts usually come in the form of beeps, color changes, or even a voice. They are also capable of displaying graphs that track users IAQ. On top of that, it is also possible to use these apps to turn on an air purifier when air quality declines. In buildings, such automation like triggering the ventilation system based on pollutants concentrations becomes possible with protocols like BACNet.

Measure what’s important

Being able to detect exposure to particle pollution is important as because if unnoticed it can have adverse symptoms and health implications. Further to the point, it is very important to ensure the device is capable of reading PM levels. If it cannot do this, the reading the device provides may be insufficient as PM levels are vital in establishing overall air quality. That said, it is also beneficial if sensors are able to pick up exposure to life-threatening carcinogenic substances, such as formaldehyde.

Well-known devices

By purchasing a device with a renowned reputation for home environments, people have a higher chance of improving their environmental protection and reducing their chances of developing symptoms related to respiratory health problems. Air quality monitors come in many forms with not all being entirely suitable for homes and everyday use.


Foobot has a total of four sensors which can detect PM2.5, VOCs, temperature, and humidity. Via the Foobot mobile app, users can receive alerts and comprehensive reports. The product is also light-weight and very well-priced at $199.


PATS+ can supposedly measure PM2.5 in real time and was developed by Berkeley Air. The monitor has a battery life of around 80 hours and can also measure temperature, humidity, and movement with an additional sensor for carbon monoxide. It can cost up to approximately $500

Air Advice

Air Advice is a device designed for contractors. After collecting data for 30 minutes, it sends a report which the contractor can use. The reports compare the IAQ with the standards set by the World Health Organization and the EPA. It measures PM2.5, VOCs such as formaldehyde, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, temperature, and relative humidity. It costs $2,490 excluding an annual subscription fee of $995.

Additional reading

In some circumstances, an indoor air quality monitor can be more important than others.


  • For buildings that are particularly susceptible to problems with mold, a mold air quality monitor can be installed to detect the harmful airborne particles associated with it. According to the EPA, exposure to mold can include the development of asthma, allergic reactions, and other respiratory complaints.

  • Exposure to volatile organic compounds can lead to a number of symptoms related to sick building syndrome. In more severe cases, it can lead to adverse health problems.


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  3. https://www.energycircle.com/guide/guide-indoor-air-quality-monitoring-devices-healthy-home

  4. https://www.sylvane.com/blog/five-best-indoor-air-quality-apps/

  5. https://www.allergycosmos.co.uk/best-air-quality-monitor/

  6. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/radiation-exposure/radon.html

  7. https://www.energycircle.com/guide/guide-indoor-air-quality-monitoring-devices-healthy-home

  8. http://berkeleyair.com/monitoring-instruments-sales-rentals/particle-and-temperature-sensor-pats/

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  11. https://www.epa.gov/mold/ten-things-you-should-know-about-mold