Are All Air Filters the Same?

July 24, 2018 11:24 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

All HVAC air filters work to keep the airflow clear and clean, but while they all do the same job, they’re not the same air filter. An HVAC system will have an air filter the manufacturer recommends and is the best choice. When unsure of the recommended air filter, contacting an air conditioning service in Oregon City, OR like L & J Heating & Cooling is a good idea. Here are three things to know about HVAC air filters.

MERV ratings

All HVAC air filters have a MERV rating. MERV stands for “minimum efficiency reporting value,” and can range from 1 to 20. Basically, the higher the MERV rating, the less debris and particles that will get through. The trade-off of catching more and more debris and dirt is that the highly rated air filters will clog faster. Usually, you’ll be looking for a MERV rating above 5. Anything above 13 is usually only used in a hospital or other sterile environment. Most high-quality HVAC systems are designed to work with filters with MERV ratings between 8 and 11. If there are any questions about which rating you should choose, an air conditioning service in Oregon City, OR can inspect the HVAC system and provide its expertise.

Replacing filters

Like most working parts, knowing when to replace an air filter is an important part of maintenance. A clogged air filter can decrease the airflow in homes, putting more strain on the HVAC. Sometimes it’s better to replace the filter a little early if you’re having problems, rather than let things get worse. Letting things get worse can affect and damage other parts of the HVAC. Most air filters have a note about when they should be replaced on their packaging. On average, air filters last between a month and three months. An air conditioning service or hardware store that sells HVAC air filters can answer any questions about when to replace them.

Cleaning differences

There’s also the option of using washable filters. These reusable filters are environmentally friendly, and in the long term, if taken care of properly, can save money. These air filters can last for years if properly serviced. They do need to be dried out thoroughly after being cleaned to avoid any mold growth. These air filters also have lower MERV ratings, usually around 1 to 4. They also start to lose their efficiency as time goes on. An experienced air conditioning service in Oregon City, OR like L & J Heating & Cooling can help with any necessary maintenance and answer any questions you have about reusable air filters.

L & J Heating & Cooling has been a go-to HVAC contractor and air conditioning service in Oregon City, OR for more than 20 years. We pride ourselves on our fast and friendly service. We provide free estimates for new equipment installation and will answer any questions about HVAC systems. Our services are available for residential and light commercial properties. Give us a call or stop by to chat with our knowledgeable associates.

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