How to Choose the Best Air Conditioning Filter

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Investing in a high-quality air filter offers some key advantages. However, it is not always straightforward to determine the quality of an air filter. You have to consider several factors, such as type of air filter, its MERV rating, and other parameters.

Check out this article on whether installing a high-quality air filter is worth it and how to choose one. 

Advantages of High-Quality AC Filters 

The following are some of the advantages of installing high-quality HVAC air filters. 

1. Costs Savings 

Standard air filters can get clogged up quickly and require frequent replacement. High-quality air filters are designed to last around six months – longer with proper maintenance. Unlike conventional air filters, you do not have to spend money frequently on replacements for high-quality filters. High-end HVAC filters may have high initial costs compared to others, but these filters help you save more money in the long run.

2. Extended HVAC Lifespan

In addition to the reduced life span of the filter, poor-quality air filters can also reduce the lifespan of the HVAC unit. Poor-quality filters can allow some particles to pass through the mesh, exposing the HVAC components to contaminants. High-quality air filters are made of layers of fine mesh that prevent finer contaminants from passing through. In addition, high-quality filters have a larger surface area that helps boost filter performance.  

3. Improved Air Quality 

High-quality HVAC air filters are standard in specific settings, such as laboratories and hospitals, where air quality is a primary concern. One primary benefit of high-end air filters is that they catch respiratory irritants, dust, and other contaminants and prevent them from circulating in the air. 

High-performance air filters can catch small particles in the air, even as small as 0.3 microns. This can have a significant impact on the air quality. High-quality air filters can even remove several types of viruses and bacteria from the air, making them an ideal choice for people with respiratory problems. 

4. Energy Efficiency

Another benefit of high-performance air filters is that they lower the energy consumption of the HVAC unit. These filters improve airflow, so the HVAC system doesn’t have to work harder to push air through it. As a result, high-end air filters can help you save on heating and cooling costs. 

How to Check the Quality of Air Filters?

An HVAC air filter’s performance and quality are measured through the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) rating, which ranges from 1 to 16. Air filters with lower MERV ratings, such as those made of spun fiberglass material, are generally effective in catching larger contaminants, such as hair, pollen, and fibers. 

Most residential homes use air filters with a MERV rating of 5 or higher. These filters are typically made of polyester or fiberglass paper and can trap household dust, pollen, and mold spores. Air filters with a MERV rating of 13, which is often the highest MERV rating in residential units, can filter out microscopic particles, smoke, and some bacteria. Click here to read more about high-quality air filters. 

Tips on Choosing Air Filters 

One of the first steps is to figure out the type and size of the air filter for your HVAC system. Some HVAC systems have filters in a slot next to the air handler or furnace, while others have them inside the return air ducts. You can remove the existing filter to measure it or check the dimensions in the HVAC owner’s manual.

If you still can’t figure out the dimensions, you can get in touch with the HVAC manufacturer. Finding the right size is vital because if you get an air filter that is too small, air can bypass the filter from the sides, and if you get a larger filter, it won’t fit. Along with the length and width of the air filter, you also need to determine the right thickness.

While most residential HVAC filters are around one inch thick, some filters are as thick as four inches. 

Once you have the type and size figured out, you need to choose the right filtration level. A filter that is too dense might offer good filtration, but it might make it harder for the HVAC to heat or cool your space. In some cases, a filter that is too thick might also negatively impact the efficiency of the HVAC system.

Filters with a very high MERV rating might not allow for proper air circulation. The right filtration level is when the filter allows for ample airflow through the HVAC while removing as many contaminants as possible. It is best to consult with an HVAC technician to choose the right filter for your HVAC system.

A qualified technician can also perform the replacement service, ensuring the filter is installed properly. 


Check out more articles in this series:

The Benefits of a Ceiling Fan

How to Properly Ventilate Your Garage

How to Stay Cool in Summer – Top Tips


Jen Stanbrook
Jen Stanbrook

Jen is an award winning digital publisher and has been creating interiors and home decor content for over 10 years.
She has an insatiable love of home interiors, has worked with hundreds of brands, and currently supports many bloggers within the creative industries to share their expertise through writing.
She spends most of her time in her little garden office pod, has 2 daughters and 2 (fighting) cats.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram

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