Does an air purifier in the car really make sense?
Junctions, major exits, traffic jams, tunnels, heat waves and… pollution. The traditional hell cocktail is undoubtedly consumed without moderation on the way to summer vacation in our cars. To prevent this, JVC is launching its KS-AP320, a nomadic air purifier for the living areas of our cars. what is it worth “20 minutes” turned on the ignition to test it.
The size of a portable speaker
Make no mistake when you buy JVC’s KS-AP320. Despite its looks, it’s not a Bluetooth speaker, but a nomadic air purifier! It’s not the first of its kind, there are several on the market, but other than LG for the home, it’s the first time a consumer electronics manufacturer has entered the untypical portable air purifier market. . No wonder, after all, JVC is a specialist in on-board products (eg car radios, car loudspeakers, etc.).
The KS-AP320 is a modest device (6.6 cm in diameter by 18 cm in height and 360 grams). In particular, it has been designed to fit in a cup holder like many vehicles have. Its aluminum cylinder is pierced by six cells that suck in the air to, after filtering, expel it at the top of the device. There is a touch panel to adjust the filtration speed on two levels, but also to know the ambient temperature and that of the humidity level thanks to a double LCD display. The KS-AP320 is connected to a cigarette lighter, an adapter is included.
Three air quality indicators
Its application is very easy. During operation, the air purifier continuously draws in and expels air. A bright LED ring around its vent grille provides an accurate indication of air quality. green, the air is healthy; blue, it is of average quality; red, it is clearly dirty. A simple test by blowing cigarette smoke on the device shows its responsiveness: the light ring immediately turns red!
The filtration process used by JVC is that of photocatalysis. A particle filter first neutralizes dust and pollen. It needs to be replaced approximately every six months (sold for less than 20 euros). A catalyst then neutralizes bacteria, odors and fine particles. When disassembling the device, we found that JCV uses 6 tiny UV-A LEDs for this.
Efficiency with perfectable relevance
How to judge the effectiveness of this air purifier that we tested during several car trips? Hard to say. Firstly, because a car already has its own filter for its interior ventilation. This prevents airborne exhaust particles from entering the passenger compartment (Remember to change it every 20,000 kilometers!).
Then because we can only rely on the KS-AP320’s bright LED display to know the quality of the surrounding air. And if it’s green next to the driver (as was mostly the case in our testing), does that mean the kids in the back seat are getting the same air quality too? ? Too bad JVC doesn’t share the volume of air its air purifier can handle, nor the length of time… And don’t forget that the air in a car is cleaned best if you open the windows regularly…
Of course, it remains a device that can be used with the windows closed. Undoubtedly one can imagine a relevant use during long night journeys in the car, but also under a tunnel with heavy traffic jams or even in a car where a passenger is sick or with a baby that you want to protect. Good point too: the KS-AP320 removes bad smells from the cabin. Which can also be useful when traveling with a pet.