Every HVAC system is an important part of a home. It provides the changing conditions that make a home’s environment comfortable. When weather conditions change, it is imperative that the HVAC system can alter the environment in the home to reach temperatures that are acceptable to its occupants. When the HVAC system’s clogged air filter reduces the efficient function of its heating or cooling ability the home will not quickly and efficiently reach comfortable temperatures.
Types or Filters
Air filters are an integral part of your heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system. Your filter allows air flow while filter the air of pollutants like dust, debris, mold, mildew, dander, pollen and other allergens. When selecting a filter, look for one that has the ability to reduce a certain amount of pollutants in the air. Its Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV rating) tells you how efficient the filter is at trapping airborne particles. The MERV rating ranges from 1, the least effective to 16, the most effective.
Classifications of MERV Ratings
• 5-8 Residential – Good
• 9-12 Residential/Commercial – Superior
• 13-16 Hospital/Surgery Rated
Check Your Air Filter’s Condition
Check your filter at least once every 6 months. If you notice an extreme amount of dust or other pollutants increase the frequency that you check your filters. Change it to every 3-4 months. Some households are forced to change filters every month because conditions in and around the home require it be changed that frequently.
What Factors Make Changing the Air Filter Frequently Necessary
Homes that are located near the desert, construction sites, farmland or gardening sites may be subjected to a large amount of debris and dust circulating in the air that eventually makes its way into your home. Homes with a large number of occupants including pets are more likely to need frequent filter changes.
Homes in busy metropolitan areas, with fireplaces and located in very windy regions may also need to have their filters changed as frequently as monthly.
Types of Filters
The type of filter you select for your home is dependent upon several factors:
• the air quality in and around your home
• the pollen and other allergens in the area that affect your home’s occupants
• the degree of protection you desire for the occupants in your home
After evaluating the air quality, the existing pollutants and allergens in the air, decide how much protection you want to provide to your family and select a filter that provides that protection. Plain panel filters provide the least amount of protection. Pleated filters and electrostatic filters provide slightly more protection. HEPA filters provide the greatest amount of protection, protecting against 99.7% of all pollutants in the air including mold, mildew, dander, allergens and dust.