Understanding MERV Ratings

Understanding MERV Ratings

MERV Ratings Determine How Small a Particle A Filter Can Catch

Air filters are an excellent tool for improving the air quality in your home or business. Indoor air quality is crucial to your overall health — with the COVID-19 pandemic bringing additional awareness to this for many home and business owners.  If you're like most people, you probably don't think about your air filter until it's time to change it. And even then, you might not know what to look for when buying a new one. However, one thing you should definitely be aware of are the MERV ratings associated with each air filter.

What is a MERV rating , and why should they matter to you and your home? In this article, we'll discuss MERV ratings and some of the factors that you will want to take into consideration when deciding which MERV rating is the best fit for you.

What Is a MERV Rating?

You may be familiar with the term MERV, which stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. MERV is a rating system developed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) to standardize and simplify air filter performance ratings.

The MERV rating scale ranges from 1 to 20 and is broken down into three categories:

MERV 1-18

This category includes filters designed to remove large particles such as dust, pollen, and mold spores from the air. These filters typically have lower initial costs but are not as effective in removing smaller particles such as bacteria, viruses and dust mites.  They also may need to be replaced more frequently. 

MERV 11-13

This category includes filters designed to remove both larger and smaller particles such as bacteria, viruses, and smoke from the air. These filters are the best way to ensure the best indoor air quality in your home. MERV 13 filters are recommended by the CDC and the EPA.  It's also recommended by ASHRAE, the industry standards organization for HVAC engineers. These high efficiency filters are often pleated to reduce the pressure drop and prolong the life of the filter.    

Browse the selection of MERV 13 through Airzey's subscription service, here.

MERV 14-20 

This category includes filters designed for the larger industrial and medical HVAC systems.  They are not available for home-use mostly because of the large pressure drops.  

MERV Rated Filters & Home Efficiency

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While MERV filter ratings are essential when choosing an air filter for your home, it's also important to consider air filter efficiency. A high MERV rating doesn't do you any good if the filter isn't letting air go through. It's important to balance air flow and efficiency in removing both small and large particles. This will ensure that your air is not only clean but also enhance your comfort.  

Air filters come in a number of sizes to accommodate the different sizes of filters used by the HVAC systems installed at your home. Depending on the system, your home may have more than 1 filter and a number of sizes. Where are these filters located?  Depending on your system, they may be located in (a) the air return ducts located in different rooms around the house - look for the large metal grate on your wall, ceiling or utility closet door or (b) furnaces with a dedicated compartment for the air filter.  Some homes may have wall mounted AC heads in each room and the filters may be part of this unit.   

Make sure you replace your air filters regularly. A dirty air filter can reduce your HVAC systems' efficiency and make it harder for your home to maintain the temperature you want.

Most filters should be replaced every three months, but depending on the type of filter and how much dust and allergens it’s catching, you may need to replace it more or less frequently.  If you have pets or live in an area with a lot of dust or pollen you’ll want to replace your filter more often.

If you're unsure which air filter suits your home, the team at Airzey can help you narrow down your options. Our team can help you choose a filter that will work well for your specific needs while allowing your HVAC system to operate efficiently. With the right air filter, you can breathe easily, knowing the air in your home is clean and healthy.

MERV Rated Filters & Indoor Air Quality

The quality of the air you breathe has a direct impact on your overall health and well-being. That's why choosing an air filter with a MERV 13 rating is essential. MERV 13 filters are  recommended by both the CDC and the EPA.  When shopping for an air filter, look for a pleated MERV 13 filter. This will ensure that you get the best protection from harmful airborne particles while providing long life and good air flow for your comfort.

Air filters are not just for people with allergies or asthma. Even if you have no respiratory problems, it's still important to choose an air filter that will remove harmful particles from the air. A higher-rated air filter will help you breathe easier and sleep better, knowing you're protected from harmful airborne particles.

Choose a pleated MERV 13 air filter to ensure the best indoor air quality for you and your family. Your health depends on it.

Who Benefits from a MERV-13 Air Filter?

Everyone in your home or office will benefit from cleaner air. But some people will benefit more than others.

If you have asthma or allergies, a  MERV 13 air filter can help reduce your symptoms. This is because the air filter will trap many allergens and pollutants that can trigger an asthma attack or allergy flare-up. Likewise, if you have a lung condition, a MERV 13 air filter can help alleviate your symptoms, as the air filter will trap particles that could aggravate your condition.

Even if you are a healthy individual, a MERV 13 air filter can be beneficial. This is because the air filter will trap particles that could cause illness, such as viruses and bacteria.

Everyone can benefit from a MERV 13 air filter. If you are looking for cleaner air in your home or office, consider investing in a high-quality pleated MERV 13 air filter. Your lungs will thank you.

Which MERV Rating Is Right for Your Household?

Filters with a MERV rating of 13 are most effective at capturing viruses from the air. They are also very good at capturing dust, pollen, and mold spores. The downside to using these filters is that they can cause your HVAC system to work harder with less energy efficiency or lower air circulation leading to discomfort.

If you have someone in your household who suffers from allergies or asthma, a filter with a MERV rating of 11 or 12 can help improve their symptoms. If you live in an area with a lot of wildfire smoke or other air pollution, an MERV rating of 13 can help improve the air quality in your home.

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What are the different types of air filters?

There are many different air filters, but they can generally be classified into two categories: mechanical and electrostatic.

Mechanical filters physically trap particles as air flows through them, while electrostatic filters use charged surfaces to attract and capture particles.  Note that efficiency of electrostatic filters often decreases after installation due to the loss in charge. 

How often should I change my air filter?

It depends on your filter type and the environment in which it is used. In general, mechanical filters should be changed more frequently than electrostatic filters. You can learn more about how often you should change your air filter here. 

What are the benefits of higher MERV ratings?

The main benefit of a higher MERV rating is that the air filter is more effective at removing contaminants from the air. This can lead to cleaner air in your home and improved indoor air quality. Additionally, it can help extend the life of your HVAC system by preventing dust and other particles from building up on the system's components.

What are the drawbacks of a high MERV rating?

One potential drawback of a high MERV rating is that the air filter may be so effective at trapping particles that it starts to restrict airflow. This can lead to increased energy costs and strain your HVAC system. Luckily, Airzey has solved this problem because our filter’s nano-fiber technology allows us to get that higher MERV rating, while still staying energy efficient and increasing air flow. 

Order Your Air Filters from Airzey

Airzey offers high capacity, high efficiency MERV 13 filters in a wide variety of sizes.  These filters use a unique nano-fiber technology to ensure great filtration without compromising air flow.  . We can help you find the right air filters for your home or office, and we offer discounts for bulk orders. Alongside that, you can make changing the air filters in your home significantly easier by enrolling in our air filter subscription service. With this service, you can ensure you have the filters you need, when you need them and in the different sizes you need them. 

Visit our website today to shop our selection of air filters, or contact us to learn more about our products and services.