Indoor Air Filtration Systems: Residential, Commercial, & Institutional

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Air Treatment

Demand for indoor air filtration equipment – including central systems, local units, and replacement filters – is expected to grow 2.0% per year through 2025 to $1.8 billion from a high 2020 base. Concerns about airborne viral loads that came to light during the COVID-19 pandemic produced a large spike in demand in 2020 and 2021. This increased level of awareness about indoor air quality – along with ongoing concerns about respiratory ailments and increased building construction – is expected to maintain demand levels well above those seen before the pandemic. However, growth will be relatively slow during the latter half of the forecast period as demand moderates to a more sustainable level.

Local Systems See Faster Short-Term Spike, but Central Systems Offer Longer Term Gains

In 2020 and 2021, local or portable air filtration systems saw stronger demand gains than central systems in every market. Local systems offered end users in these markets an air filtration system that was both easily installed and more likely to possess HEPA filtration capabilities. In contrast, central systems are more likely to require professional installation and may not be compatible with pre-existing HVAC systems. As a result, central systems will offer better opportunities beyond 2021. Additionally, central systems benefit from gains in residential building construction, where homeowners will continue to install systems that can treat the entire house as opposed to one room.

Residential Market Remains Top Opportunity for Suppliers of Air Filtration Systems

The residential market accounts for the majority of indoor air filtration system sales, because consumers are more willing to invest in products that will allay their concerns over poor air quality. Consumers who suffer from asthma or other health ailments or are concerned about inhaling bad air caused by wildfires, which are increasingly common, particularly in the western half of the US. Additionally, the pandemic has forced more consumers to spend more time at home and prioritize their air quality, a trend that will likely continue as many employees continue to work from home, either permanently or as part of a hybrid model.

Replacement Filter Demand Supported By Increasing User Base & Higher Value Products

Replacement filters experienced strong gains in 2020 and 2021 due to:

  • existing owners of air filtration equipment purchasing or stocking up on filters
  • the large number of new users buying systems and replacement filters together in order to reduce the indoor transmissibility of the coronavirus

Going forward, suppliers of replacement filters will benefit from this enlarged user base. Sales of higher value products like smart systems will help create recurring revenue, while systems with multiple levels of filters will support volume gains. However, competition from generic replacement filters will continue to limit price growth, counteracting inflationary pressures to an extent.

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