HVAC, the acronym for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning is a system that provides heating and cooling to buildings both residential and commercial. The system is designed to regulate the environment where it is installed. It does this by using heating and cooling to control the temperature of a room. It also regulates the humidity level wherever it is by controlling the movement and distribution of air within the space.
Your HVAC air filters are thin filters located behind the intake register. Filters can be transparent like a cheesecloth or opaque and accordion-pleated.
When installing an HVAC system in your home, you need to be abreast with certain information so you can make sure that you’re getting the most of it. The filters that comprise your system play a crucial role in their overall efficiency and the wellbeing of your home. Why shouldn’t you leave the technicalities in the hands of the professionals? At least, they’d be the ones to fix it.
Well, even though you still have to consult them, you need to know some essential information in case they develop problems and need to be replaced. Here are four facts about them you should know.
It Doesn’t Improve Indoor Air Quality
You should note that the main purpose of HVAC filters is not to improve the quality of your indoor air contrary to popular belief. As a matter of fact, there are few standard filters that can reduce the kind of particles you breathe in and the problems they can cause.
The reason is that pet dander, dust, pollen, and similar pollutants consistently enter your air space and freely move around. The HVAC filter is only able to remove them when the fan is active or they find their way into the duct system.
So, since it doesn’t improve quality, what can you do especially if you or a loved one have allergies or asthma? Get an air purifier alongside the filter. The air purifier system is built to continually clean the air whether or not the fan or A/C is running.
High MERV Ratings Mean Lower Efficiency
MERV rating means The Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value and it measures the efficiency of air filters in blocking particles and other debris from gaining access to the HVAC system.
A high MERV rating means the system can filter even the smallest of particles. Therefore, a higher rating means a better filter in most cases. The ratings go from 1 to 20; a MERV rating of 1 can only filter out big dust particles while a 20 MERV, the highest rating, removes extremely small particles.
MERV 20 is usually found in hospitals and facilities that have high-grade heating and cooling systems. They can accommodate that kind of high-efficiency filter, unlike typical residential AC systems.
Highest Rated Filters Can Obstruct Airflow
Not all air conditioners can accommodate such filters. As indicated above, most residential systems are not built for high-rated filters as they can obstruct airflow. Your HVAC system at home may not have the appropriate motor for it.
High-Efficiency Filters Can Spoil Your Unit
High-efficiency air conditioning filters can reduce the airflow in both furnaces and air conditioners alike. In other words, they can reduce the efficiency of the system which can ultimately lead to a spike in your electricity bill and cause it to spoil.
The filter can cause the furnace to overheat or the condensing coils of the air conditioner to freeze. You might need a furnace chart size to determine what size of furnace or air-conditioner your facility requires. The unit doesn’t overheat or freeze only because your HVAC filter is dirty, it could also happen when the wrong filter is used.
Enhancing Performance Might Do More Harm Than Good
Don’t fall for the temptation that your air filter would perform better if you clean it. Do not vacuum, wash, or re-use your filter when you know it is disposable. Vacuuming releases dust, dirt, and toxins into your house and equally damages the filter. Cleaning it with water can also breed mold and bacteria. If you notice it is dirty, change it completely.
They Come in Different Sizes
Are you getting a filter for a residential apartment or an organization? They don’t have the same unit size. You need to do proper research before you buy a filter for your size. Consult with a professional or your HVAC unit owner’s manual to ensure you select the right size for your unit.
One major reason why your HVAC unit might have some problems is when the air filter isn’t properly maintained. Don’t wait for your filter to get dirty before you change them. Get proactive, learn more about them so you can stay on top of the situation and keep your family healthy.
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