How Well Does an HVAC Air Filter Work Compared to an Add-On Filtration System?

AC Maintenance in South Central Texas

The air inside of the average home is filled with a huge number of allergens, contaminants, and pollutants. Therefore, the one of best ways to overcome these indoor air quality issues is to install a whole-home air filtration system. Many people wrongly believe that they don’t need a separate filtration system since their HVAC system already has its own air filter. However, as you will soon see, there’s a huge difference between a standard HVAC air filter and an actual filtration system.

What Does an HVAC Air Filter do

An HVAC air filter serves one primary purpose, and that is to keep dirt, dust, and debris from getting inside of your HVAC equipment and potentially damaging it. Unless you use a more expensive, more efficient air filter, it won’t really have any impact on the air quality inside of your space. This is because most standard air filters can only trap large particles like dirt and dust. This means they don’t do much of anything to trap allergens or the various airborne chemical contaminants found in many residential and commercial properties.

Understanding Filter Ratings

Air filters are usually rated using the MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) scale, which measures how effective the filter is at trapping particles of varying sizes. The scale goes from the least efficient MERV 1 rating up to the most efficient MERV 16 rating. Most residential HVAC air filters range from MERV 5 to MERV 12. At the lower end, the filter only traps larger particles, whereas a MERV 12 or higher filter can trap most smaller particles like pollen, mold spores, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds).

Using a higher-rated filter is a great choice if you suffer from allergies or respiratory issues since it will filter far more particles out of the air. However, many home HVAC systems aren’t compatible with anything higher than a MERV 12 filter.

There are a few whole-home air filtration systems that use MERV 15 or 16 filters like those used in hospitals and other areas where the air needs to be far cleaner. These higher-rated filters can usually trap more than 95% of all airborne chemicals, allergens, and other contaminants, which makes them by far the most effective option for improving indoor air quality.

Expert Indoor Air Quality Solutions

If you’re concerned about the air quality inside of your property, GVEC Air Conditioning and Heating offers a range of indoor air quality accessories and solutions, including air filtration systems like the Reme-Halo® and MicroPure® Total Home Active Air Purifier. Our expert technicians can identify any air quality issues you might be facing and help you to choose the right equipment or solution. We also offer a full range of AC and heating services, including repair, maintenance, and installation. With locations in Gonzalez, Schertz, Seguin, La Vernia, and Cuero, we serve customers throughout South Central Texas. Contact us today to learn more about your indoor air quality options or any of our other services.

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