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Low- or High-Efficiency Air Filter: Which Is Better?

Posted on January 16, 2014

The air quality in your Kansas home is important and pollutants, such as dust and dander, can clog up your heating and cooling system. One of the easiest ways to improve the air quality in your home is by paying attention to the type of air filters you use.

There are a lot of filters on the market. Most of them are marked as either high-efficiency or low-efficiency but all of them are rated on the Minimum Efficiency Rating Value (MERV) system. The MERV ratings range from one to 20, with one being the lowest efficiency and 20 being the highest efficiency. All filters have their advantages, but in the long run a mid-range efficiency filter with a MERV rating of 11 is typically a better investment. Here’s why:

A low-efficiency air filter can increase its efficiency over time. As the dust builds up on the filter, other debris will become caught before entering your HVAC system and recirculating into your home, but this process takes time. You will have to change the filter about once a month because the dirtier the filter is, the harder the heating and cooling system has to work.

With a high-efficiency air filter, you can reap the benefits of better air quality right away, because it does not require any debris build up to work better. The dense weave and pleating of these air filters allows them to capture much smaller particles, allowing for less dust to reenter your home. The effectiveness of high-efficiency air filters will also improve over time like a low-efficiency filter, and most are disposable meaning so they will need to be changed regularly.

For information on high- and low-efficiency air filters, including which type will work best for your HVAC system, contact Comfort Systems, serving the Wichita, KS area since 1996.

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