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How to Find the Right HVAC Filter


The air filter is a critical component in your HVAC system. It helps remove pollutants and allergens common in the Milton, Georgia, air so you can breathe safely and comfortably in your home. There are many options on the market; make sure you’re choosing the right HVAC filter for your needs.

Check Your Filter Size

Before you can choose the appropriate filter for your HVAC system, you’ll need to determine the right size. The easiest way to do this is to check your current filter, provided that it has the right fit. There should be no gaps around the edges, and it should sit flat. If your current filter doesn’t fit properly, your manufacturer’s manual should have size guidelines.

Look at the MERV Rating

Every HVAC filter has a MERV rating. This is a number between 1 and 20 which tells you how efficient the filter is at capturing small particles. The higher the MERV rating, the finer the filter’s mesh. A filter with a low MERV rating will allow more and larger particles to get through, yet provide ample air flow to your system. If the MERV rating is too high for your system, it may not be able to pull air through successfully.

Aim for a MERV rating of at least 5. Go up to 9 or more if you suffer from allergies or asthma. Your HVAC technician can help you select the best filter for your system’s capabilities and your personal needs.

Beware HEPA Filters

A filter with a MERV rating of 17 to 20 is considered a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. These are typically used in hospitals and other commercial settings. Most residential HVAC systems are not equipped to work with a HEPA filter. Only use these in air cleaners that are manufactured for this level of filtration.

Make sure your HVAC system is equipped with the best filter for your needs, and change this filter at least once every three months. For your other maintenance needs, schedule an annual tune-up with E. Smith Heating & Air Conditioning. Make your appointment now by calling 678-369-8866.

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