DIY How To Chose The Right Filter For Your Home

Air filter.

How to pick your Filter

The furnace filter is often the most forgot about household item  

The overall effectiveness of a filter is rated based on the Minimum Efficiency Rating Value (MERV) scale developed by The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). The MERV scale ranges from 1-20, 1 is the least filtration and 20 has the most filtration. For a better understanding of the MERV scale reference our info graph or our more in depth chart.

**Note: Only buy filters rated with the MERV scale, other filter rating systems do not have national accreditation**

Without further adieu here are the 5 common HVAC filters along with the pros and cons of each one:

1.   Disposable Fiberglass

MERV: 1-4

Disposable Fiberglass filters are the most common filter we see in households. With a MERV rating between 1-4 they aren’t filtering much more than large dust particles and lint.

Price: $1.00-$2.00

Pros: Cheap,  do not have to stay on top of filter changes

Cons: Filters little to nothing, do not improve indoor air quality, terrible for homes with allergies or asthma

2. Disposable Pleated

MERV Rating: 5-8

Disposable pleated filters are another popular choice, but often cause more problems than they solve. 1” pleated filters must be changed regularly to avoid clogging up and causing a system breakdown.

Price: $2.00 to $20.00.

Pros: On the cheaper end of the spectrum, filters some mold spores and dust mites

Cons: Can add extra strain and restrict air flow on your system, can decrease system efficiency

3. Disposable 4″ Pleated Filter

Merv Rating 10

4” disposable pleated filters are typically seen on high efficiency equipment. The installation of these filters usually requires a little ductwork rearranging. Also the filter’s larger surface area allow for greater air flow.

Price: $20.00-$50.00

Pros: Filters pet dander, mold, pollen and dust. Only requires bi-annual changes

Cons: May need ductwork reworking to fit system, filters cannot always be purchased at a hardware store

4. 1” Respicaire Electronic Air Cleaner

MERV Rating 11-13

The MicroClean 95 uses electro-magnetic attraction to remove harmful airborne particles from your indoor air. The patented Carbon Graphite charging system has a 95% efficiency rate removing harmful particulate from your air.

Pros: Removes particulates as small as .001 microns, helps with respiratory conditions, removes the most troublesome particulates from the indoor air – Lung Damaging Dust, Animal Dander, Pollen, Airborne Mold, Virus, simple fast maintenance

Cons: Only comes in 16x25x1 and 20x25x1 sizes, custom sizes don’t exist

5. Evolution Perfect Air

MERV Rating 15
The Evolution Perfect Air uses Capture and Kill technology that rivals the filtration systems in government and hospital buildings. This system helps protect heating and cooling systems. 

Pros: Kills 99% of germs, pollen, and mold, has been proven effective against common pathogens and fungus, easy maintenance, great for homes with respiratory illnesses

Cons: Usually requires some ductwork reworking to accommodate the size of the filter cabinet

Need filters? Get them here

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Contact the experts at Chris Mechanical Services.

Call us at 630-206-5093!

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