Garland Heating And Air Blog

What is an HVAC filter? | Heating and AC Repair in Dallas, TX

Matt Parker - Wednesday, May 17, 2017

An HVAC filter is an indispensable component of your HVAC system that secures the system from dust and / or airborne particles that can be pulled in.  It also increases the indoor air quality in your Dallas home by counteracting the buildup of these particulates from circulating throughout your home.  In order for HVAC filters to do as intended they need to be changed out regularly in order to avoid the buildup of airborne particulates and breaking down the system. A clogged filter will produce poor indoor air quality, higher electrical bills and can possibly bring about a breakdown in the heating and cooling system.

Air filters have a rating system that is based upon their minimum efficiency reporting value, otherwise known as MERV.  These ratings can vary between 1 and 16.  The higher the number, the smaller the particles that particular filter can catch and prevent from entering your system or being dispersed throughout your home.  The smaller the number then the less likely the filter will be at filtering certain airborne pollutants.  This rating system was created by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers, otherwise known as ASHRAE.  It is a universal system in place that can be used to compare all brands and types of filters. 

The higher the rating for an air filter does not always mean the better it will be for your HVAC system.  Highly rated air filters can also restrict airflow which will in turn force your system to work harder than it should at conditioning your indoor air.  In order to find the best air filter for your particular HVAC system you should consult the manufacturer to see what the maximum MERV rating for your system should be and what it can handle.

Different Types of Air Filters

DISPOSABLE FIBERGLASS – Disposable fiberglass air filters are inexpensive and disposable solutions that will help in the prevention of only large particulates, such as dust and debris from getting into your HVAC system. This type of filter will not do much in reference to actually cleaning the air and enhancing your indoor air quality.

DISPOSABLE PLEATED – Disposable pleated air filters are one of the most popular choices for air filters in HVAC systems. They do a pretty good job at filtering out most of the common dust and debris that can be found in your heating and cooling system. They are a bit more expensive than their disposable fiberglass counterparts but they do a much better job at ensuring your system and home is free of most air pollutants and irritants.

WASHABLE AIR FILTERS – Washable air filters are much more costly to purchase than the disposable counterparts but that is due to the fact that they can be cleaned off regularly and can be reused for up to five years or more.

HIGH EFFICIENCY PARTICULATE ARRESTANCE FILTERSHigh efficiency particulate arrestance filters, more commonly referred to as HEPA filters have the highest MERV ratings and are beneficial for homeowners with special air quality needs. They are some of the most efficient air filters that you can purchase but are also one of the most costly on the market.

Whenever you have your next service call from your local HVAC company, ask your technician what type of filter they would recommend for your system. They will be able to give you a recommendation for your particular heating and air system that will help ensure that your system stays healthy while allowing it to run as efficiently as possible.  Once your technician has given you a couple of recommendations to check out it does not hurt to look these products up online and see what other users have said about them. While it is a good rule of thumb that you do not trust everything that you read online, you should be able to get a good feel by visiting numerous sites such as Amazon for example to help gauge which of the filter options best suit you.

When you decide on what filter to use, first and foremost ensure that you get the correct size for your system. There’s nothing worse than finding out that the air filter is either too big or too small.  If you are unsure, check your existing system’s air filter and measure the length, height and thickness when shopping for a replacement.  Always ensure that you buy an air filter that fits properly in your system.

Garland Heating and Air Conditioning has been helping homeowners and businesses alike in Dallas, Texas and surrounding areas for many years.  We are one of the top heating and air companies in the area.  Dedication, determination and professional services that you can rely on have helped made us the go to source for customers in the area who are in need of heating and cooling repairs, installations and maintenance.  When you contact Garland Heating and Air Conditioning you can rest assured knowing that you are receiving high quality professional heating and cooling services that are both reliable and affordable.

Garland Heating and Air Conditioning is a leader in the HVAC field servicing Dallas, Plano, and surrounding areas. Our NATE certified technicians provide professional HVAC related services, installation and repairs.  If you are looking for help with your home or business’ HVAC system do not hesitate to give us a call today. One of our professional technicians will be more than happy to assist you and schedule a service call at your earliest convenience.  Garland Heating and Air Conditioning is a proud member of the BBB and maintains a rock solid A+ rating.

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