Airthings Wave Plus Radon Air Quality Monitor

Last updated date: October 2, 2020

DWYM Score
9.1

Airthings Wave Plus Radon Air Quality Monitor

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We looked at the top Air Quality Monitors and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Air Quality Monitor you should buy.

Overall Take

Consumers will appreciate how easy this air quality monitor is to use. Once you set the unit in the room you want to test, it will begin checking radon levels, humidity, temperature, pressure, carbon dioxide levels and the presence of any toxins or chemicals. Then, all you need to do is download and check the app for results. In our analysis of 80 expert reviews, the Airthings Airthings Radon Air Quality Monitor placed 2nd when we looked at the top 11 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note October 2, 2020:
Checkout The Best Air Quality Monitor for a detailed review of all the top air quality monitors.

Expert Summarized Score
7.7
14 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.4
197 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Airthings is a well-regarded, Norway-based manufacturer of air quality monitors, specializing in radon detection.
- New York Times Wirecutter
Real-time radon detection. Additional sensors track CO2, TVOC, and air pressure levels. Simple and intuitive app.
- TechHive
Airthings Wave Plus is a battery-powered sensor that detects Radon, CO2, TVOCs, humidity, temperature, and air pressure. Radon gas is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers, so it’s very important to know if there are high levels of this invisible, odorless gas in your home.
- The Gadgeteer
THe battery-powered monitor can also detect harmful chemicals, as well as monitoring the general quality of your air. Simple to install. Clean and friendly app. Radon siren.
- Trusted Reviews
The real strength of AirThings Wave Plus is the ability to gather data and display it in a beautiful, easy to understand manner. A big aspect of this is the color-coding. Both on the summary screen and individual trend graphs, sensor data is displayed according to predefined recommended levels.
- Make Use Of
The Wave Plus measures not only radon – and has a radon alarm to let you know instantly of any danger – but TVOCs (total volatile organic compounds), carbon dioxide, humidity, temperature and pressure.
- Tech Advisor
The device has a very simple system for showing you how good your air quality is. Wave your hand in front of the monitor and a small inner ring glows green when things are going well; orange is a warning and red indicates danger.
- The Irish Times
The design makes me think of it as a fancy smoke detector given the circular shape and the color, and I believe that was done intentionally. It’s a very nice looking device with a good build quality that will not look out of place in anyone’s home. Most people will either not notice it at all, or if they do, will think it’s some sort of home appliance or sensor. To me, that is a success for the designers at AirThings.
- Gear Diary
Airthings can track six different factors of air quality including chemicals (VOCs), CO2, humidity, pressure, and temperature. It also sports a built-in radon detector, differentiating itself from the competition. On top of monitoring the stats in a companion app, notifications let you know when humidity rises and the like. Alexa and Assistant integration allow you to bring the stats into your smart home.
- 9 to 5 Toys
It is the first smart and battery operated total IAQ monitor with Radon detection. Everyone from homeowners, landlords, tenants and even employers and building managers can finally have full visibility into six indoor air components: Radon, carbon dioxide (CO2) airborne chemicals (TVOCs), humidity, temperature and air pressure.
- Architecture Lab
The Wave Plus uses the new Senseair CO2 sensor Sunrise which is ultra-low-power and this is the reason the device can operate up to 16 months with just 2 AA batteries. It features the well known BME680 sensor for temperature, humidity, air pressure and VOC measurements. Finally, I think the company uses a custom made Passive Radon Diffusion Chamber – Alpha spectrometry using digital detector technology. They take Radon very seriously.
- See The Air
What sets the Wave Plus unit apart from similar sensors is that ability to measure Radon, a radioactive element which under normal conditions is a gas and easily inhaled. According to Wikipedia that means it’s “the second most frequent cause of lung cancer, after cigarette smoking”. Not having a power hungry Wi-Fi chip on board means it can be battery powered and Airthings say the 2 AA cells (included) should provide around 16 months of use before they need to be replaced.
- Automated Home
The Airthings Wave Plus* is the first battery-operated indoor air quality monitor to include radon detection. Designed for all populated spaces, its discrete appearance allows it to easily blend in with any décor. Users of this product praise the super-easy setup of the unit. They also consider it to have had a positive effect on the quality of the air in their house.
- Tech Imperatives
Set up is easy, just download the app, create an account and follow the instructions. You will then need to leave it for 7 days to allow it to learn about your current air conditions. I had no radon issues, but I assume if there were an excessive amount of this it would warn you immediately.
- Mighty Gadget
What experts didn't like
But none of their many devices measures particulates, a requirement for inclusion in our tests.
- New York Times Wirecutter
More expensive than conventional radon testing methods. Andoroid app setup was buggy.
- TechHive
I do want to mention that I’ve had issues with the app losing data when adding a 2nd device and once when I hadn’t synced in over a week due to being away on vacation. Since the unit uses Bluetooth instead of WiFi to sync, this could be an ongoing problem.
- The Gadgeteer
App only updates when in Bluetooth range. No particulate matter sensor.
- Trusted Reviews
If you were hoping to walk around the house and identify problem areas, that’s not possible. The Wave Plus must be placed in one location and left alone for at least a few weeks to gather any meaningful and reliable trend data. After this, you can change the location if you want, but you should change this in the app so the sensors are recalibrated.
- Make Use Of
As a general air quality monitor, however, it's not flawless as it doesn't measure particulate matter and its other features are a bit limited. The illuminated ring is also of limited usefulness, as, if the air quality isn't perfect, it doesn’t tell you at a glance which of the monitored air quality factors is affected.
- Tech Advisor
The anxiety caused by the glowing orange ring. Until you open the app, you aren’t sure if it’s carbon dioxide, the dinner fumes or the radon that is coming for you.
- The Irish Times
It takes 7 days, 7 days, for the sensors to calibrate so basically you need to wait a week before you are supposed to really take the data coming out with any seriousness. This isn’t too crazy but one thing to keep in mind is if you bought this with say a 14-day return policy then it might take half of that time to even truly try it out properly.
- Gear Diary
The device needs a smartphone in order to upload the measurements to the web so it is mandatory to install the app as there isn’t a WiFi chip inside.
- See The Air
However, not having WiFi built-in also means that you can’t easily check on the device when you are away from home as it only updates when your phone is within Bluetooth range.
- Automated Home
Some are disappointed by the lack of WIFI, which means that you need to get quite close to the device to establish a connection via Bluetooth.
- Tech Imperatives
Quite likely due to the aggressive battery management on my Huawei P30 Pro, whenever I loaded up the app, I had to do a manual sync. This doesn’t always work perfectly, I noticed if my Bluetooth was off, it didn’t warn me, it just tried to sync then not update. Similarly, with Bluetooth on, quite frequently it took two attempts for the data to refresh.
- Mighty Gadget

From The Manufacturer

We spend 90% of our time indoors where the air is often 2 to 5 times worse than the air outside. Continuous monitoring of indoor air quality is key for minimizing negative health effects, preventing illness and increasing productivity, energy and good health. Airthings, air quality specialists and experts in radon, created the Airthings Wave Plus as the first smart air quality monitor with radon detection. Wave Plus has since won multiple awards for consumer electronics and innovation and was among the 2019 TIME Magazine inventions of the year. It is the perfect solution for homeowners to gain full visibility into six indoor air factors; radon, carbon dioxide (CO2), airborne chemicals (TVOCs), humidity, temperature and air pressure. Airthings Wave Plus includes a free app to connect to your smartphone (iOS/Android) via Bluetooth and an online dashboard with advanced analytics. Battery operated allowing you to install anywhere, with 16 months battery life. Please allow for a 7-Day settling period for the sensors to adjust to their new environment. By monitoring daily and continuously, you can avoid radon side effects, get the best indoor humidity level, low voc levels and low carbon dioxide levels. Made to the best indoor air quality standards, Airthings Wave Plus is essential in every home.

An Overview On Air Quality Monitors

It’s estimated that most people spend 90% of their time inside. That means almost all the air we breathe throughout any given day is indoor air. It makes sense then to learn exactly what is in the air that we breathe and what the levels of those potential contaminants are. Once a person is armed with this information, he or she can take steps to change the environment for the better.

Air quality monitors are now made for home use, but you’ll need to do your homework before deciding on a specific model. This is because not all air quality monitors test for the same things. Some models are also more tech-savvy, which may not be ideal for those who prefer a simple readout that is easy to understand.

Start off reviewing which contaminates the air quality monitor is capable of identifying. For example, the BIAOLING Multifunctional Air Quality Monitor tests the air for formaldehyde, total natural and synthetic volatile organic compounds, carbon dioxide and fine particulate dust matter. Other monitors also track the temperature and humidity of the air, as well as the air pressure and ozone levels.

Determine whether you need a stationary air quality monitor or one that is more portable. Some models can actually be used for both purposes, as they have the ability to spot-check a hotel room or continuously run for two days to provide you with a more accurate picture of the air quality in your bedroom.

Look at how the results of the air quality test are provided to the end-user. For example, some monitors are more simple to use and feature an easy-to-read LED display. The units are color-coded with green indicating that the air quality is good, yellow revealing moderate air quality levels and red showing that the air has reached unhealthy levels.

Individuals who are more tech-savvy and who prefer a more detailed report will want to go with a unit like the Awair Element Indoor Air Quality Monitor. This device connects to an app on your smartphone, so you can log in and review your results. The app is also able to provide feedback and helpful tips to improve the health of the air in your home. The device is even compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Other models also work with Nest and Roomba.

DWYM Fun Fact

Did you know that since the year 1990, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has listed indoor air pollution as one of its top five public health risks? In fact, the organization points out that there are an astounding 1,000 different pollutants in the air that could be making you sick. It’s no wonder there are over 50 million Americans suffering from allergies each year.

Some of the most common pollutants found in the home include cigarette smoke, mold, dust particles, carbon dioxide and volatile organic compounds (VOC). VOCs include everything from formaldehyde to pesticides to the odor that is emitted when you sauté onions. They even encompass your body odor.

If you’re concerned about the air quality in your home, the first step is to purchase an air quality monitor. This is the best way to learn which of the above pollutants are plaguing the areas where you relax, spend time with your loved ones and sleep. Armed with this information, you’ll be able to make important changes, such as replacing your home air filters or installing an air purifier in the rooms most affected.

The Air Quality Monitor Buying Guide

  • Air quality monitors that are powered by wall adapters often have cables that are difficult to hide.
  • Some air quality monitors pair with a smartphone app, so look for compatibility with your phone’s operating system when making a purchasing decision.
  • Most air quality monitors do not test for things like carbon monoxide and mold, so you’ll still want to install carbon monoxide detectors in your home, too. If you suspect you have a mold problem, you can also buy mold detection kits.
  • You may find some air quality monitors are off by a couple of degrees or micrometers. For the most part, this isn’t too much of an issue. If you need more accurate results, however, you’ll want to invest in a more top-of-the-line model.
  • It is important to note that some air quality monitors run loudly, while others are much quieter. If you have an infant at home or you consider yourself a light sleeper, you may want to search for a quiet model.
  • Some air quality monitors are battery-operated. You’ll need to check whether the batteries are included or whether you need to purchase them separately.
  • Portable air quality monitors can be used to test the air quality in your car, office, basement or hotel room.
  • If you suffer from severe allergies or asthma, an air quality monitor is an excellent investment. You’ll have the information you need to keep your attacks to a minimum. For example, if you notice the dust matter levels rising, you’ll know it’s time to change your home air filters.
  • Monitors that connect to an app on your phone are often able to track the changes in your air quality over a specified period of time. This is a great way to identify any unhealthy patterns, so you can make any necessary changes.
  • Some of the apps used in conjunction with the air quality monitors are only compatible with 2.4 G Wi-Fi. They won’t work over Wi-Fi or 5.0GHz connections.
  • Many of the monitors can also be taken outside to get a snapshot of the air surrounding your home.
  • Air quality monitors vary slightly in price based on their design and integration with today’s technology. The BIAOLING Multifunctional Air Quality Monitor comes in at an affordable rate. Both, the Huma-i Advanced Portable Air Quality Monitor and the Awair Element Indoor Air Quality Monitor, are moderately priced. You’ll pay more, however, for the Airthings Radon Air Quality Monitor, which works with Alexa, Google Assistant and the app on your phone.