Does Level of Air Filter Really Matter? - An Expert's Perspective

When it comes to air filtration, the MERV rating of your filter is designed to indicate which filter is most suitable for your home. The higher the MERV rating, the fewer particulates and other pollutants can enter your home. It's easy to assume that thicker air filters are the best option since they have more square feet to capture and retain air particles. However, there are a few things to consider when selecting an air filter for your home.A 1-inch air filter may need to be changed every month, while a 4-inch air filter can last up to six months.

But if the 1-inch filter is too shallow, it can cause a loose fit that allows unfiltered air to enter the ducts. On the other hand, if you try to use a 4-inch-thick air filter in a system that's made for a 1-inch-thick filter, the efficiency will actually worsen. That's why manufacturers began placing more folds (or pleats) on air filters and increasing their surface area. As an expert in air filtration, I recommend changing your home's air filters regularly before you start to see evidence that it's been a while since you changed them. As the MERV rating increases, the filter becomes more restrictive and more pressure and energy will be needed to expel air.

This can lead to higher electricity bills as your air conditioning unit has to work harder. If you leave a clogged filter unchanged for a long time, that's when you can start to see problems related to airflow resistance. Most modern units in recent years should be able to use at least one MERV 8 filter. Air filters with MERV 13 or higher are recommended for those who prioritize air quality and may have to deal with asthma, serious allergies, and other similar circumstances. The combination of a thin air filter with a high MERV index can also restrict airflow to the point of reducing efficiency and causing excessive wear. It can be comforting to know that the filter that has stopped working isn't as bad as it could be, but it doesn't do anything else for you until you change it.

The main risk of high-efficiency air filters comes from the fact that they are not modified for long periods of time. By eliminating air pollutants (both chemical and environmental), your family will be able to breathe cleaner air every day and your electricity bills will also be reduced.

Ashleigh Yballe
Ashleigh Yballe

Amateur internet ninja. Hipster-friendly tv fanatic. General pop culture buff. Subtly charming beer buff. Wannabe burrito evangelist. Award-winning internet practitioner.