Hansberger Refrigeration Blog: Your AC Repair Resource

Selecting a New Furnace Filter

Selecting a New Furnace FilterIt’s a good idea to start the heating season with a new furnace filter to improve the energy efficiency of your furnace or heat pump and maintain high indoor air quality. Because the temperatures are mild for most of the winter, allergens abound in the air outdoors and in.

Although the primary role the air filter has for HVAC systems is to keep the components of the furnace and air conditioner clean, a good filter will trap offending airborne particulates and help anyone with allergies breathe easier.

Choosing Air Filters

Look for the MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value) rating on the furnace filter. It should have a number between 1 and 16, or give you a named, grouped range. Some manufacturers use terms like good, better and best. Good filters range between 1 and 4, better filters from 5 to 8, and best filters from 9 to 13 and higher.

The numbers refer to the size of particles they trap. Higher rated filters will trap smaller particles, like dust mite waste, plant pollen, pet dander and mold spores, which are the most common allergy triggers.

But before choosing a higher rated filter, consult your owner’s manual. Besides removing more particulates, denser filters also slow the airflow through the air handler. Systems require a certain air velocity and if it’s too slow, energy consumption rises and mechanical problems may develop.

Filter Options

  • The cheap fiberglass filters only remove the largest particles from the air and allergens will easily pass through them.
  • The pleated filters are a better option since they have more surface area. While they’re porous enough for good airflow, they also trap smaller particles effectively.
  • Electrostatic filters are available that use a charged surface to attract tiny particles. Some are disposable and affordable, as long as your HVAC system uses a standard size.

Selecting the best furnace filter you can use will increase heating efficiency and improve the indoor air quality. If you’d like to learn more, contact Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric Company, providing trusted HVAC services for Yuma homeowners.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Yuma, Arizona about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about furnace filters and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 928-723-3183.

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