I am looking for a simple way to significantly reduce the amount of dust in an appartment without fan or filter. Methods I have thought of:

  • Place a bowl of water on the radiator and put a drop of detergent in the water. This should increase humidity and catch dust

  • Place duct tape or a roll of tape (the stuff that is used to remove dust off clothes) on a radiator. As air circulates around the radiator the tape should catch a lot of dust

  • Place a sticky-fly-trap near a radiator (this kind: http://www.amazon.de/gp/product/B004ANTUBI (in German))

But after some days of testing all of these methods don't produce any visible result (no dust sticking on them).

What do you think of these methods, do you have better ideas?

  • Dust is usually suspended in the air. Without passing it through a filter, it may be difficult to catch any dust. Have you tried any ionization based products? But even those would require to filter.
    – navigator
    Commented Sep 27, 2015 at 8:30
  • I believe the duct tape can act as sticky filter and the air flow is created by the radiator. I believe "ionization" just creates O3 (Ozone) and that is nothing else what a Xerox machine does. You dont want extra ozone in your appartment, although it is reduced to O2 by the irregularities of walls, but I dont believe those devices are a good idea. Commented Sep 27, 2015 at 8:34
  • ionisation can help: when a surface gets statically charged, all the dust on it gets charged as well and will become airborne. The ionisator is designed to reverse this charged and make the dust precipitate out. I experimented with an ionisator sitting on a sheet of paper, over time that paper became visibly dirty with tiny particles.
    – Hobbes
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 14:41
  • ok, very interesting, do you have a link to such an ionisator - i mean one where one could put a sheet of paper in or which has a collecting tray? thx Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 15:20
  • It is a defective or mislabeled ionizer that produces ozone. An actual ionizer does help prevent dust from lingering in the air.
    – JDługosz
    Commented Oct 13, 2015 at 12:52

7 Answers 7


Where is your dust coming from? If it is coming from open windows, or outside, you might be out of luck. But if it is coming from normal household sources, then your best way to remove dust might just be the vacuum and the wash machine. Most dust in your home's air will come from carpets, couches, blankets, clothing etc. You can see this in your dryer "lint" trap. So, regularly vacuuming and cleaning carpets and couches likely have the biggest impact on dust in the air. Regularly cleaning blankets, sheets, couch covers, rugs, etc. will also help a lot.

As for cleaning the dust from the air, you are seeing the results I would expect from sticky paper and extra humidity. Those things may get some small amount of dust, but they won't get enough to notice. Hepa filters, or electrostatic air cleaners may help, but you don't want to use them, and I don't blame you. They are expensive to run. I do believe that a vacuum would probably reduce air dust more than an air filter anyway.

  • Thx, the dust I think comes from construction outside, thats why I start to bother, because I sense that there is a lot of dust. I will make some experiments with sticky tape on a fan. Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 14:17
  • If it is coming from outside and you have windows open, I might also suggest putting a fan in your window blowing the air OUT. This will create air flow, and a negative pressure in your home, which will pull in air from the cracks under the door, in the walls, and so on. These small entry points to your home will let in less dust than the window itself..
    – JGTaylor
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 14:39
  • @JGTaylor Your comment is incredibly non-sense. If you blow some air out, you have to get some air in, some way. If your house is surrounded by a dusty area, the air you get in will be dusty.
    – yo'
    Commented Oct 26, 2015 at 9:11
  • @yo' Thank you for the helpful feedback. I know this is kind of hard to imagine without a picture or a drawing. I really don't know how to explain myself any better without going into a lot of detail. :(
    – JGTaylor
    Commented Oct 26, 2015 at 16:32
  • If the dust is coming from outside install fine mosquito nets in your windows. They will catch a lot of dust, so you have to wash them regularly: I just put them under the shower now and then.
    – RedSonja
    Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 12:26

Keep the windows closed, don't own any animals, leave your shoes outside the front door, live alone, don't eat anywhere but at a table, get dressed and undressed outside the house. Most of that is not really possible, of course, but around 60% of the dust in a home comes through open windows. You might be interested in reading the link below, but essentially, dust is always with us, and the only real way to reduce or deal with it is to either buy an air filter machine or to make sure you dust regularly.



I have made a research about dust at home, because it is a reason for alergic reactions. And here is what I've found:

Common sources of dust:

  • clothes, blankets, and other fabric which releases tiny pieces in the air when we move them
  • old newspapers and magazines or other paper which degrades over time and also produce dust
  • human skin
  • animal skin, hair, feathers
  • dust coming from outside with the air through doors and windows
  • dirty shoes. The wet dirt which becomes dust when dried

Items that collect lots of dust over time are:

  • carpets
  • blankets
  • fluffy covers of furniture
  • curtains

When you move around in your room you put in the air the dust which lays on the floor or on chairs, tables, beds. To reduce all this dust you have to clean it regularly. When all those surfaces are clean there will be less dust in the air.

The best solution is to remove all the carpets, fluffy covers, heavy curtains. Instead cover the floor with laminate or other hard material which can be cleaned with wet microfiber cloth.

If you don't want to say goodbye to your carpets then you have to vacuum them twice a week and beat them outside each two or three months.

Clean the floor and the furniture with wet microfiber cloth when you spot traces of accumulated dust.

Remove all old newspapers and magazines.

Keep your clothes in a wardrobe. Pack in boxes or bags the clothes which you don't wear in the current season.


It's not clear if you want to avoid dust as a one time thing or on a regular basis. My room has only one window for light and air and so also gets a lot of dust from that window. I use one of those microfiber mops.

In India, we have a popular brand called ScotchBrite that makes these, even though the brand advocates using it with water, from personal experience, just swabbing dry works well. Catches all the dust on the floor, no need to bend or stoop, the head swivels nicely so i can run it across ridges of the walls as well.

For wet swabbing, I use a Indian brand mop called Eureka Forbes's Glide, it comes with a bottle attachment where you can fill in any combination of floor cleaners and then spray to mop the floor.

update: I also recently discovered electric sweepers! For India there is Xiolife cordless sweeper available on Amazon. For US, I believe you can look at the "Bissell" brand.


The sticky tape idea might work with a little more surface area on the sticky part and then add some sort of air moving device such as fans to move the air in your room or circulate the air in you're room by the sticky surface that way you would be running more air that contains dust by the surface that would collect it. Strangely enough I've heard that a very large percentage of our household dust comes from the dead skin exfoliating from our own bodies therefore it would make sense that if you moisturize your skin more often you might prevent that problem from happening so badly. Keep me posted on what worked and what did not work. I must add that any of those methods would pale by comparison to an air filtration system designed for this sort of thing of course.


There is absolutely no way that you can avoid dust totally. Even in the cleanest of all environments, there is some amount of dust present which might even be particles of dead skin that would have dropped off during change of clothes or even during body movement.

If you have observed chip and watch manufacturing companies where environment needs to absolutely dust free, all the workers will be in suits that hold dust from getting outside the suit's clothing. It is for the very same reason of dead skin flaking off. In short, there can be absolutely no "Dust free" environment.


In the spirit of providing simple lazy solutions, you may want to consider a vacuuming robot. These can be configured to remove all dust from the floor daily. If the dust stays on the floor it only needs a small amount of wind and it will enter the air again.

These only work reasonably well if the flat satisfies a long list of constraints, so they're not always a good solution.

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