Shopping for the best furnace filter for your HVAC system can be a bit tricky. If you don’t have all of the facts, you could pay more in utility costs. At the worst, you might damage the system or cause an expensive equipment failure. We’ve put together a set of parameters to help you decide on the best choice for your particular unit. The best filter should help save money on your annual utility costs and be easy to replace.
Choosing Filter Size and Fit
To make the best selection for your type of heating system, it’s important to read your equipment manual. Manufacturers provide detailed information about their products in order to help the buyer properly use the equipment. Look for the filter information to determine the correct size filter. The correct size should automatically fit the filter opening snuggly and be easy to pull in and out. Filters that are too tight and difficult to place or remove in the filter opening are products to avoid.
If you’re the original owner of the heating system, then your installation should’ve included a correctly sized filter. Typically, the installer will know what size filter works best and include that in the install. Use this filter’s size to purchase future ones. Most filters include the size somewhere on the product. Check the filter’s edges for the information, and take a picture of the filter before you head to the store so that you can be sure you’re getting the same kind.
Selecting a MERV Rating
Furnace filters are designed to capture any hair, dust, and debris floating in the air. This keeps the heating system clean and prevents pollution from recirculating into your home. The MERV rating, or minimum efficiency reporting value, signals the ability of the filter to prevent contaminants from entering a house. The higher the rating, the less debris recirculates. However, a higher MERV rating may not be the best choice. In fact, very high MERV ratings can cause your furnace to work too hard to heat your home. As a result, repairs or equipment failures can happen more frequently.
MERV ratings from 13 to 16 produce hospital-quality air levels. The EPA recommends medium MERV ratings of 7 to 13 for most homeowners. If your family members have asthma, allergies, or other breathing problems, a higher MERV rating is helpful. Families without these health concerns can opt for a lower rating and still reap the rewards of energy savings.
Striking a Balance
The best furnace filters for your house strike a balance between cost, quality, and personal filtering requirements. A good place to start is choosing a product that fits your budget and size requirements. Having more filter area to work with can also make a difference. Remember to return to the manufacturer’s recommendations and speak with your heating technician for the latest information about furnace filters.
Would you like some help with filter replacement and furnace maintenance services for your home? Weather Masters Corp. can provide you with a skilled furnace technician to handle filter updates in Frederick..
Pleated Versus Fiberglass
Choosing the right filtering material can further narrow your choices. A pleated air filter can capture more debris and smaller particles. It can also last up to 90 days and is usually recyclable. Pleated air filters are good to use when allergies and asthma are concerns. However, they cost a bit more than a fiberglass filter.
Fiberglass filters are inexpensive and perfect for homeowners without respiratory issues. They require replacement every 30 to 60 days. You can count on them to easily block large dust and debris, but smaller pollutants can slip through them. However, if you regularly wait to replace the filter past the 30- to 60-day mark, your system can suffer. This could mean unexpected repairs or failures on the coldest days.
Turn to the Pros
The right filter will support you and your family with comfortable indoor air all winter. Our company services heating and cooling systems, boilers, heat pumps, thermostats, and controls. We repair, install, and maintain equipment for homeowners, property investors, and property managers. Our NATE-certified technicians will be excited to work with you. Plus, we’re NCI-certified and knowledgeable about creating indoor comfort for residential properties of all sizes. Contact Weather Masters Corp. today for more information about help with furnace filters in Frederick and the surrounding areas.