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Why the Stronger AC Filter Isn’t Always Better


Taking a little time each month to change your air filter may not seem like much, but it drastically improves the function of your HVAC system. As a matter of fact, the type of system and filter you put in that narrow compartment can change how you live day to day.

There’s always more to learn about your home, and today we’re bringing you all the knowledge about your air filters. After this read, you’ll feel more confident about your decisions to improve and maintain your home’s health. Here’s what you need to know about going bigger with your filters.

What Good Are Air Filters?

When we talk about air filters, we’re talking about the difference between outside air and air inside your home. Maintaining your ideal temperature in your spaces is only a small part of the benefits a well-working HVAC system offers. Depending on your air filter’s MERV rating, it can eliminate a percentage of the airborne particles in your home.

Allergens such as pollen, dust, dander, and more are scattered throughout the air, but filters keep them contained. Indoor air quality is essential to keeping your family healthy. Additionally, air filters keep your system healthy! By reducing the amount of dust that passes through your heating and cooling components, your HVAC can run better and live longer.

Getting to Know Your Air Filter.

It would be best if you changed standard air filters once every three months at the very least. Dust can build up quickly in your system, especially if you have a large household with pets. If there doesn’t seem to be a significant improvement when you change your filter, you might need a professional to assess which filter is right for you.

It’s true; some filters can handle more contaminants than others, but that doesn’t mean they’re suitable for every home. Air filters are rated on the MERV rating scale, which tells you effective the air filter is and what pollutants it can remove. For example, specific MERV ratings signify the following:

  • MERV 1-4: Removes dust mites, spray paint, pollen, dust, textile, and carpet fibers
  • MERV 5-8: Removes pet dander, cosmetic sprays, mold spores, and cement dust
  • MERV 9-12: Removes lead dust, milled flour, and auto emissions
  • MERV 13-16: Removes cooking oil, most tobacco smoke, bacteria, and sneeze droplets
  • MERV 16-20: Removes viruses and all forms of smoke

So, why wouldn’t you want the best and the biggest air filter? The MERV 14+ filters are more extensive than those with lower MERV ratings, but they also restrict the most airflow. Their fibers are incredibly compact to capture more particles. These types of filters are mainly used in large facilities rather than residential spaces.

Don’t Go Big, Go Home with the Right Filter.

We all want what’s best for our home, but what if that means going home with a smaller filter? We know that bigger air filters block more air. Without the right amount of airflow for your system, the fan and blower work harder, putting extreme pressure on your system.

A filter with a higher MERV rating might sound nice, but it won’t do the job it’s intended to do without the right HVAC system installed. Plus, the air filtration process becomes inefficient and won’t even improve your indoor air quality. If you’re serious about improving the air quality in your home, consider a portable air cleaner. Otherwise, we suggest fitting your system with the appropriate air filter to keep you and your family safe and comfortable.

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