We all know the air outside is full of pollutants and when we step inside our house, we think the air is clean. But the air inside of our houses can be just as dirty as the air outside. Indoor levels of pollutants can be two to twelve times higher than outdoor levels! These pollutants include mold spores, pollen, dust mite debris, household dust and lint, smoke, pet dander, bacteria, viruses, smog and more. Do you have babies in your home? Did you know they take 30 to 60 breaths in a minute? That is two to three times more frequently than adults. Do you have anyone in your household that suffers from allergies? Clean air is important for everyone to breathe, especially the very young, those with allergies and the elderly. Do you have a pet? Pets produce a lot of dander. And every time they come in the house, they bring in more than just their own dander. Clean air filters in your home can be a benefit to everyone. Just one small change can make a difference in the air quality in your home. And it is a change you can make.
A clean air filter can make a world of difference in your home’s air quality. And it only takes minutes to change. It can prevent allergens from moving back into the airstream and it also blocks particles that can damage the inside of your air conditioning system. Air filters have a Minimum Efficiency Rating Value (MERV). It is best to choose filters with a MERV rating between 8 and 13; the higher the rating, the better the filter’s ability to block more and smaller contaminants. The air filter is built into the return-air ductwork of your home’s HVAC system. As long as the fan is running, the air is being filtered.
Types of Air Filters
There are a few different types of filters that most people will have filtering the air in their homes. Most air conditioning systems in homes use flat filters that need to be changed once a month. One common type of these filters is the fiberglass or matted-fiberglass filter. However, after it becomes clogged with dust, it stops working, which can lead to the air conditioning system overworking. Also, it only captures the larger particles and the MERV rating is low, usually between 1 and 4. To keep your air conditioning system running smoothly, fiberglass filters should be changed at least once a month but more frequent changes may be needed if you have pets, smoke in the home or have other environmental concerns.
Another type of flat filter is the pleated filter. These filters have more material in the same amount of space as the previously mentioned fiberglass filters. They usually cost a little more and do a slightly better job of filtering the air. And, the more pleats they possess, the better they filter the air. They have a MERV rating of 10 to 13.
The best pleated filters are high-efficiency air filters, with MERV ratings between 14 and 16. They are more practical for most residential HVAC systems. They are capable of removing up to 85% of the air pollutants from your home. They can trap very small particles of dust, mold, pollen, and others. The Lennox MERV 16 filter actually removes up to 95% of particles. Since they help your ac system perform better, high-efficiency filters may help you reduce cooling costs, too. Of course, these will cost the homeowner more money than the filters mentioned earlier. However, they will provide cleaner indoor air and can lessen future ac repair costs.
Many people seem to think it a chore to change the air filter every month, but when you understand the reasons for having a clean filter, maybe the benefits of cleaner air will help you remember why it is necessary. Remember to mark your calendar to install a clean filter per the manufacturer specifications.
Call Bratcher Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. for Your Best Air Cleaner Solutions
If these filter types still don’t provide the air purification you need or want, there are air purification systems that can be installed to provide the cleanest air possible. Whole Home purification systems like the Lennox PureAir or HEPA Filtration System can provide amazing air quality, removing up to 99% of particulates and bio-aerosols. Call Bratcher Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. for help in selecting the best air cleaner solutions for your home, if traditional air filters are not enough for your comfort needs.