Everything You Need to Know About Air Filters

Air filters are an essential component of any HVAC system, as they help to ensure that the air quality inside your home is up to par. They remove harmful particles such as dust, pollen, mold, fibers, germs, and more from the air as it flows through the system. It's important to regularly clean and replace your air filters in order to keep your HVAC system running smoothly. The Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) of a filter indicates its ability to capture particles between 0.3 and 10 microns in size.

Air filtration is the most commonly used technology for removing particles from an air stream due to its relative ease and flexibility. Cloth and fibrous filters are both used for this purpose. Cloth filters are made of woven and felt fabrics that collect particles mainly on their surface, while fibrous filters are a nonwoven mat of individual fibers randomly oriented in two dimensions. Media filters are seven times more effective than standard types of air filters, making them a great choice for people in industrial areas or those with weak immune systems.

Ionizing air filters use an ionizer to give airborne particles an electrical charge before they pass through a pre-filter. However, more restrictive filters with higher MERV or CADR ratings can reduce airflow and cause your home to heat and cool less efficiently. HEPA filters are made from several layers of borosilicate glass fibers or polypropylene fibers randomly arranged as a net to maximize particle arrest. Charcoal air filters are commonly used in air purifiers, range hoods, bathroom fans, and microwaves.

Exhaust filters are installed in ventilation systems to filter air from an enclosed space before releasing it into the environment. When choosing an air filter for your home, it's important to consider the specific needs of the occupants and determine the CADR or MERV ratings that best meet those needs. Properly designed electrostatically improved filters have higher efficiency than conventional filters for the same airflow resistance, or less airflow resistance for the same efficiency.