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  • Merv filters

    Air filters prevent dirt and dust from entering your home and filter debris that may clog the air passages of coils of your HVAC system.

    HVAC filters can vary in size, design, and quality. Choosing the right air filter can make a difference in the quality of your indoor air and increase the efficiency of your system. Energy efficiency and green programs have begun to adopt requirements over the past few years to produce filters that remove the smaller particulates that can cause allergic reactions and other health problems.  Now you will see rating values under what the industry calls MERV (minimum-efficiency reporting value), which is a measure of the efficiency with which filters remove particles of specific sizes. The test in which MERV ratings is described in ASHRAE Standard 52.2-2007, “Method of Testing General Ventilation Air-Cleaning Devices for Removal Efficiency by Particle Size.” A MERV 8 filter can remove particles down to 3 microns in size at an efficiency of 70% or greater (1 micron is about 0.04 thousandths of an inch). Homeowners often think that the washable type filters are the best option to save money, but it is important to know they are only 3% efficient for indoor air quality. Washable filters are typically 1–4 MERV, and filter out particles of 10 microns and larger.

    Both disposable and washable filters have maintenance involved.  When determining filter type, it is important to consider what type of maintenance is involved.  Disposable filters need to be changed every 3-6 months depending on the usage of your system and other factors such as a home with animals.  The ease of replacing the disposable filter is as simple as sliding out the old filter and replacing with a new one. Dirty filters will lead to poor air quality, higher energy bills, and costly repairs because your system is working harder.

    The reusable filters do require a manual cleaning process. A reusable filter will need be to washed at least once a month for maximum efficiency.  Over time reusable filters begin to degrade.  Often homeowners get lazy and don’t clean the washable filter as often as they should.  Over a period of time dirt and particulates start to build up and it becomes increasing harder to remove. After a while, reusable filters will also need to be replaced.  Coupled with the fact that washable type filters clean or not, restrict air flow causing undue stress on your HVAC system.

     When determining whether a disposable filter or washable filter is best for you, ask yourself a few questions.

    • Do I want to have better indoor air quality? If yes, then pleated MERV rated disposable filters are the best option.
    • Do I want to have the ease of replacing my filters without a lot of fuss? If yes, then pleated MERV rated disposable filters are the best option.
    • Do I want to extend the life of my HVAC system? If yes, then pleated MERV rated disposable filters are the best option.


    If you still have questions, please call Performance Heating and Air Conditioning, Inc. (916) 933-2683.  We will be happy to answer them.