WAC5500 and WAC9500 Comparison - Which Should You Buy?

Are you interested in getting a Winix air purifier and have come across their two leading & extremely well regarded models the WAC9500 and WAC5500, however aren't totally sure as to the differences between them and ultimately which is best suited for you (i.e which one to buy)? If so, then you have come to the right place -- a brief & objective comparison account: WAC5500 Vs WAC9500 -- that will carry out a break down analysis of features and specifications, this will in turn give you a clear idea as to what each can offer you as well as which (for you) offers the best value for money.

Capture System

wac5500: 3 stage air cleaning | 99.97% 'True-HEPA' filter (life-long, washable)

wac9500: 5 stage air cleaning | 99.99 % 'True-HEPA' filter (life-long, washable)

The two models perform a slightly different cleaning operation -- the 5500 has three stages: i) the carbon pre-filter (captures chemical vapors & odors e.g. from cigarettes etc.), ii) then the HEPA filter (collects micro-dust as small as 0.5 microns, pollen, mold spores with extreme efficiency) and then iii) ignition of plasmawave technology (which acts to neutralise viruses and bacteria, more details below).

The WAC9500 follows a similar operation but with five stages: i) a washable anti-bacterial pre-filter (which is a mesh filter to trap larger particles e.g. pet hair), ii) an advanced true HEPA filter,iii) anti-microbial treatment iv) advanced odor control (absorbing pet and household odors) and v) again finally plasma wave technology.

Winix WAC5500 HEPA Air Cleaner

Winix WAC5500 True HEPA Air Cleaner with PlasmaWave Technology
Amazon Price: $171.00 $170.99 Buy Now
(price as of Dec 1, 2016)

Room Rating

wac5500: CADR 350 sq ft. | Air Quality Sensor

wac9500: CADR 284 sq ft. | Auto Mode

CADR stands for certified clean air delivery rate and you will see (and rather surprisingly) the wac5500 can cover an extra 66 ft -- however both models are intended for 'large rooms'. The wac5500 comes installed with an air quality sensor that acts to detect any airborne particles and will alternate its settings to the most appropriate in a 'set and forget' manner & like wise with the wac9500 which also has these smart sensors to determine any air impurity within a room and automatically changes fan speeds to "remove them efficiently and effectively". 

Winix WAC9500 Ultimate Pet True HEPA Air Cleaner

Winix WAC9500 Ultimate Pet True HEPA Air Cleaner with PlasmaWave Technology
Amazon Price: $349.99 $208.99 Buy Now
(price as of Dec 1, 2016)

Air Purifier Filters & Fitted Technology

wac5500: carbon pre-filter | plasmawave technology

wac9500: anti-bacterial pre-filter & AOC carbon-filter | plasmawave technology

As briefly mentioned above, the wac5500 has a specified carbon pre-filter that acts to promote a 'freshness' in a room through capturing toxins and odors caused by decay etc. as well as acting to protect your HEPA filter. The wac9500 comes with an 'advanced' carbon - odor - control mesh filter that is 3 times more effective (given it is made from coconut shell) than the standard one that comes with the wac5500 with removing ammonia etc. But, it also has a anti-bacterial pre filter which is used to collect pollen and dog/cat hair and further protect your HEPA filter.

They also both feature plasmawave technology which basically acts to form both positive & negative ions, which are 'joined' with natural water vapor to create 'hydroxyls'. Winnix explain that these hydroxyls will 'neutralise' - viruses, chemical vapors etc. through dismantling their 'molecular structure' into basically more water vapor -- making for a much cleaner air supply.

Practical Features

wac5500: remote control | 4 fan speeds (from ultra quiet to turbo mode) | digital display |

wac9500: remote control | sleep mode | smart sensors (dust, odor, light) | 4 fan speeds (from ultra quiet to turbo mode) | digital display | off timer settings

Both models offer you a remote control for you to alter settings whilst sitting down on the couch. The wac9500 does however offer a range of additional features such as sleep mode -- that basically operate in your room but adjusts settings to be of minimum interference whilst trying to get to sleep; so the digital control display panel (which details all your settings & measurements etc.) switches off and operates at its quietest mode, so it won't disturb you.

It also has a more advanced sensor system with 3 different detectors: i) a light sensor (detecting when its night time and basically switches into sleep mode), ii) a particle sensor (scanning for allergens & particles that can cause a unclean home e.g. dust) and iii) odor sensor (finding odor causing chemicals e.g. ammonia). 

Further Information


Each model is covered on a one year warranty program.

Dimensions & Weight

wac5500:  16.3 x 8.5 x 21.7 inches | 15.7 lbs | color - white/silver

wac9500: 16.5 x 8.9 x 21.9 inchs | 18.8 lbs | color - white/silver

EnergyStar Qualified & CARB Compliant

Both the wac5500 & wac9500 are energy-star qualified (i.e economically energy efficient) and CARB qualified.

Air Intake & Output

wac5500 - intake from the front and vented out the top.

wac9500 - intake from the front and vented out the top.

Average Review Ratings (sourced amazon.com)

wac5500: 4.5 out of 5 stars from 150 + reviews.

wac9500: 4.5 out of 5 stars from 180 + reviews.

Conclusion - Which Should You Buy the WAC5500 or WAC9500?

Clearly the wac9500 is the more advanced model which will provide you with an ultimately even cleaner air supply in your home (due to the extra cleaning stages & 'advanced' filters) -- and should certainly be the device you go for if you have pets living in your home. This being said, it does cost around $70 more and may be a concern if you have a particularly large house (where the 350 ft CARB from wac5500 is the more fitting model). But, generally speaking I would go for the wac9500, given that for an extra $50-70 you are getting one of the best air purifiers on the market, that offers an edge in almost every aspect over the wac5500. However, (as you can see from the excellent ratings & reviews) both are very, very decent air cleaning units.

So which one are you going for -- the WAC9500 or WAC5500 and why?

Also Be Sure to Check Out the Winix 5300

Winix PlasmaWave 5300 Air Cleaner Model
Amazon Price: $199.99 $128.00 Buy Now
(price as of Dec 1, 2016)

Moreover, if you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding either the comparison article WAC5500 Vs WAC9500 or about either model specifically then please do not hesitate to mention them in the comments section (e.g. you want more specific details of watt usage, plug type, voltage etc. on either model - please note the db rating is still to be determined) that you will find just below the fold and we will be sure to get back to you as soon as possible.