Furnace filters are small and often overlooked, but they might be one of the most important parts of your furnace system.
Furnace filters help to clean the air in your home and keep it free of allergens, as well as helping your furnace to perform at its best. Whether you’re replacing your filters or just want to know more about what they do, here’s everything you need to know about furnace filters:
Types Of Furnace Filters
There are five main types of furnace filters available on the market, and the one you choose can depend on your furnace and your home’s needs:
- Fibreglass/synthetic filters are often disposable and can help prevent dust and dirt from building up in your furnace, but they do little in terms of filtering other contaminants.
- Polyester filters are more expensive than synthetic filters, but they will provide you with more protection from harmful air pollutants.
- Electrostatic filters are available in disposable or washable varieties and are effective at filtering small particles from the air.
- Pleated filters are highly efficient and can filter out bacteria and viruses, and they last longer than fibreglass/synthetic filters.
- HEPA filters can filter up to 99% of harmful particles in the air but, depending on your furnace system, they may reduce airflow.
All furnace filters come with an air filter rating, called Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV). You want to look for a filter with a higher MERV rating, as this indicates how efficient the filter is at removing contaminants from the air in your home.
- MERV 1-4 offers the minimum amount of protection and are designed primarily to help keep your furnace clean.
- MERV 5-8 helps to remove mould and dust from the air and offers a higher air filtration.
- MERV 9-12 filters all of the dust and mould of lower-rated filters, as well as allergy-causing particles like pet dander and car exhaust fumes.
- MERV 13-16 are the highest-rated filters (other than HEPA filters) and are ideal for people with sensitivities to air quality or weakened immune systems.
How Often Should I Change My Air Filter?
The frequency with which you change your air filter will depend on a few factors, including how often you use your furnace, whether you have pets, if you’ve recently renovated and the type of filter you have. However, filters should be changed regularly and it’s a good idea to replace or clean your air filter at the beginning of a new season. Most filters come with a recommended lifespan, so you can check the guidelines on your specific filter if you’re unsure.
The team at Bryan’s Fuel is here to help with all of your home comfort questions and needs. Contact us today.