The quality of indoor air has a significant impact on the occupants’ health. It can cause or aggravate several medical conditions like asthma and bronchitis. It is more so if there are people that have dust or pet allergies.
We reviewed many different manufactures of furnace filters. Since different furnaces will require differently sized filters, we cannot say which one is the best. What we can tell you is that Honeywell makes the best furnace filters if you suffer from allergies.
Further down in the article we go over many of the different features to look for and consider when purchasing a filter for your furnace. Some of these include the MERV – Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value and the type of material the filter is made of.
It is essential to undertake scheduled preventive maintenance of your HVAC systems so that you can breathe fresh and healthy air in your home. Changing the furnace filters or air filters of your HVAC system is an integral part of the maintenance routine and must be carried out monthly. This is very important if your pet sheds a lot of hair or you are allergic to pet dander.
Although this process doesn’t take much time, many of us fail to do so merely because of the weather conditions or the lack of knowledge about the right filters to purchase.
Local HVAC experts can help you out with changing or upgrading your air/furnace filters, but you should have the basic knowledge about these filters to keep your furnace running optimally.
Benefits of replacing your air filters at regular intervals
Better indoor air quality
It is the most crucial benefit of frequent air filter replacements. With the passage of time, dust particles accumulate on the filter surface and can infiltrate into the indoor space. Such replacement is especially recommended if you have pets at your home or someone in your family is allergic or asthmatic. This will cut down a lot on airborne pet dander.
Enhanced life of HVAC unit
Accumulated dust particles can severely clog the pores on the filters and result in a restricted air-flow making the HVAC system motors work harder. This increased strain reduces the life of the complete system and can be prevented by merely changing the filters on time.
Reduced energy costs
Since HVAC motor has put more effort to make the air pass through dust saturated filters, it consumes more energy too. The back pressure that old filters create is a primary cause of increased electricity bills. Ensure that you change the filters without fail during the summer and winter seasons when there is a maximum load on your air conditioner and furnace respectively.
Reduced break-down maintenance costs
“A stitch in time can save you nine.” If the HVAC motor continuously works under the high strain conditions created by old clogged filters, it becomes susceptible to complete mechanical failure. Such a breakdown can cause a massive dent in your pocket as repairs often require a change of parts or even the whole HVAC system in some cases.
Peace of mind
As seen from the above points, changing air filters at regular intervals is a simple activity that doesn’t take much time, money or effort but generates high-value benefits. With energy savings, cost savings and clean air, your family would experience a complete peace of mind.
Furnace filter options
There is a wide range of filters available in the market and are categorized by their MERV rating. MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value and can vary from 1 to 12.
Higher MERV rating implies a smaller mesh size to catch minute dust particles and signifies a better filtration capability of the filter, but the cost increases too accordingly. Hence, you must factor in the MERV rating while shopping for the right filters for your HVAC system to balance cost and value.
The types of filter options are as follows:
These entry-level filters are the cheapest of the lot, have a MERV rating between two to three and are capable of filtering bigger dust particles and lint only.
Slightly higher in cost than Fiberglass, these filters can separate smaller dust particles and even pollen too apart from bigger particles. They have a MERV rating of six.
These have a MERV rating of ten and are pricier too. But their higher cost is justified by their superb performance in separating micro-dust impurities from the air, thanks to their electro-statically charged fibers.
Well, as the name suggests, just wash and reuse these filters and eliminate the need to change your filters for up to eight years!
It is advisable to consult an HVAC expert before changing the air filters because sometimes selecting a higher MERV rated filter can put increased pressure on your HVAC motor.
Besides changing air filters, it is also recommended to get your unit examined by a certified HVAC consultant. They’ll test the electrical connections, equipment and ducting to check for fire hazards, carbon monoxide and calibrate the thermostat.
So, just change your air filters timely to ensure a healthy home environment and a complete peace of mind!