Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

Do you have pets? Do you live in a dusty area? Do you have a smoker (or vaper) in your family? Do you have seasonal allergies? Are you or a family member an asthma sufferer? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then you would benefit by having an Oreck Air Response Air Purifier in your home.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The unassuming silver body looks good anywhere.

The Oreck Air Response air purifier has several things going for it including price, the area it can clean, and a feature called DustSense which “automatically monitors, detects and responds to the amount of particles in your air.”

The Oreck Air Response is available in three sizes; the small one can clean the air in up to a 141 square foot room, the medium can clean the air in up to a 206 square foot room, and the large (which I received) can clean the air in up to a 298 square foot room.

Inside the box, you’ll find the Air Response Air Purifier and a spare activated carbon odor filter (one comes attached with Velcro to the front side of the HEPA filter).

The large size is designed for open spaces and bigger areas like living rooms, combination kitchens and dining rooms, media rooms, and larger than normal bedrooms. According to Oreck, the combination of the carbon and HEPA filters can “powerfully trap 99% of allergens, dust, and odors.”

The Oreck Air Response Air Purifier measures approximately 21″ tall by 17″ wide (at the top) by 9.25″ deep, and it weighs about 14 pounds. The exterior is composed of a matte silver plastic with a glossy black panel on the top and matte black sides. Even though it’s a rectangular design, it’s not blocky; the curves make it look slightly futuristic and sleek. The perforations on the top give it a bit of visual interest.

The exterior is composed of a matte silver plastic with a glossy black panel on the top and matte black sides. Even though it’s a rectangular design, it’s not blocky; the curves make it look slightly futuristic and sleek. The perforations on the top give it a bit of visual interest.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

When you unpack the air purifier, you’ll need to remove the sticker at the top that reminds you to remove the plastic wrap on the filter. You can see the plastic poking out of the sides; once removed, this is an open intake area where the air is sucked in to go through the filters. The perforations on the top are where the cleaned air is expelled.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The back of the air purifier is plain matte silver plastic with a power cord at the bottom.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

Here’s the right side; again, you can see the plastic that will need to be removed poking through the air intake.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The front plastic panel slips off to reveal the two-stage filter.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

Under the filter, you can see the air intake fan.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

Just in case it wasn’t obvious, the filter cover should never be removed when the air purifier is plugged in or running.

This picture explains the way the air intake and expulsion work.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The matte black area on top below the perforated section is your control panel; when the air purifier is turned off, the only button you see if the middle power button.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

When you turn on the Oreck Air Response Air Purifier, an LED that runs along the bottom of the control panel will light; this is the Air Quality Indicator Bar, and it will glow blue when the particle count in your room is low, purple when the particle count is medium, and red when the particle count is high. Surprisingly enough (considering I live in a dusty area), I haven’t seen it be anything but blue yet.

When you have the air purifier in Auto mode, you have activated DustSense Technology, which means that the fan speed will “automatically adjust for you, always running at the lowest setting needed for optimal air quality.”

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

I like the immediate visual representation of the particle count in my room showing on the top of the air purifier; the purple looks like it would be pretty, though I’m not anxious to see it. 😉

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

There are two buttons on either side of the Power button. At the upper left is the Auto Mode button; when that is pressed, the air purifier will adjust its fan speed to handle the particles in your air as needed. If you want air to move no matter what, you can press the lower left Speed button; it can be adjusted between 1 and 3. If you are using manual mode, the Air Quality Indicator Bar will only glow blue.

The upper right Light button turns the lighted Air Quality Indicator Bar on or off. If you are trying to sleep, you might want it off, but the light glow could be a handy nightlight, too.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The bottom right button is the Timer; you can set the air purifier to run for 2, 4, or 8 hours, after which time it will turn off.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

There’s even a filter life indicator light for the odor and HEPA filters; it will glow when it’s time to replace them. Oreck says the odor filter light will go off approximately every 6 months (based on 12 hours of use per day). If you use the air purifier more often, you’ll see it sooner; if you use it less often, you may be able to go longer between filter changes.

The HEPA filter light will go off approximately every 12 months, again based on 12 hours per day of usage.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

The Oreck Air Response Air Purifier can be quite quiet, but when it is on level 3, it will push a lot of air with a bit more of a fan noise. I like to leave it on Auto mode and let it just do its thing in the background while I’m watching television or working; it’s so quiet half the time I don’t even realize that it is on.

If you are using it in the bedroom, and you like the white noise that a fan makes, you’ll probably want to put it on 2 and set the timer. Level 3 is great when your dog or cat cuts the cheese (it happens), or when anything suddenly smells not fresh.

Here’s what my odor filter looks like after a week or so of use. You can see that it has trapped hair and some other visible particles. Anything too small to get trapped by the odor filter will be caught by the HEPA filter underneath.

Oreck Air Response Air Purifier Review: Quiet, Powerful, and Worth It

No matter what size space you’d like the air kept clean in, there is an Oreck Air Response Air Purifier that can get the job done.

The Oreck Air Response Air Purifier is available in three sizes — small, medium, and large; they retail for $179.99, $229.99, and $269.99 respectively, and they are available directly from the manufacturer and from other retailers. 

Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample

What I Like: Auto mode activates the DustSense Technology which automatically adjusts the fan speed depending upon the particles in your air; The Air Quality Indicator Bar gives you a visual LED bar to look at that tells you exactly what the quality of the air in your room is at that given moment; You can turn off Lights if you don’t want to see a distracting LED; Sleep timer; HEPA filter will last around a year; Odor filter will last around 6 months, and a spare is included; Reasonably priced; Three sizes, so you can get the right one for your room

What Needs Improvement: Nothing — it works as promised

About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
I've had a fascination with all types of gadgets and gizmos since I was a child, beginning with the toy robot that my grandmother gave my brother - which I promptly "relieved him of" in 1973. I'm a self-confessed gadget magpie. I can't tell you how everything works, but I'm known world-wide for using a product until I have a full understanding of what it does, what its limitations are, and if it excels in any given area ... or not.
  • HildyJJ

    I’ve read elsewhere that light activated carbon filters are ineffective against VOCs although they help with smells. Is the Oreck’s carbon filter in the ounces or pounds category?

    • The thinner, carbon filter is in the ounces category, but the large white HEPA filter easily weighs a couple of pounds; the two together seem quite effective.