The other morning, running a little late I decide to get a coffee on the go. I go into a local coffee chain and order up a cup of Joe, No big deal right? wrong. The girl looks at me like I have a third Eye. Would you like Espresso, Latte, Goats milk? and of course there is no such thing as a Small, Med or large, Its Grande or Venti. I wanted to call my shrink. Now fast forward to the Interesting world Of Indoor Air Quality. Yep Its time to change the Air filter in your home, No big deal, Not. The man at the hardware store says What kind? Throw away, Pleated and then he throws the Fly in the ointment, He asked what Merv rating, Who is Merv and what is he doing in my air filter?
In all seriousness Indoor air quality is a big deal and the range of options is daunting to say the least. In the next few blogs Im going to cover many options for you to consider when replacing a air filter.
My office always getting visits from sales people promising us that if we sell there Air filter we could make thousands of dollars in profits, Most are junk but with a propitiatory promise that we are the only ones that the customer can buy them from, I show them the door, It just seams that they are all full of promises but in the end most are empty promises and the customer can get the same effect just by changing the filter they currently have So lets cover filters and in this Article I’m going to write about Throw away filters..
Filtration does two functions, First it helps protect our health and secondly it keeps the equipment clean, Air conditioners do not make dust but it will distribute it and dust will make ducts dirty as well clog the blower wheel and coil and is the perfect environment for mold and other yucky stuff to grow. Keeping incoming air clean will help you breath easer but will save your pocketbook a little coin Lets talk about Merv
Filters are rated by their effectiveness, Or how much dirt that the filter can remove from the air, the most common rating system is MERV ( minimum efficiency reporting value). Lets give an example of the different Merv ratings
A Merv Rating of 1-4 Will filter out Large particle Such as Pollen, Dust mites, Sand mites, Carpet fibers and so on., This type of filter is mostly used as a pre filter. In other words, the Greater the Merv the faster it will plug and need to be changed, placing a Merv 4 filter in front of it We can extend the life of the More effective filter while changing the least expensive filter first
A Merv Rating of 5-8 will filter out Mold spores, Dust mite debris. Cat and dog dander, hair spray, Works great in homes if changed often.
A Merv rating of 9-12 will do Legionella, Humidifier dust, Lead Particles, Auto exhaust particles
Most homes do very well with a Merv 8, Commercial applications and Health care facility’s use a Merv rating of 11. Most high end homes use Merv11 filters with pre filters installed in front. This is the best set up, the Merve 11 filters get changed once every year while the Pre filters are changed monthly.
In southwest Florida, a major concern is the lack of returns to feed the Air conditioning system. In most cases homes only have one return and in many of those cases its almost undersized. The reason I mention this is If a more restrictive air filter is placed in the return that is on the borderline of being undersized, It could cause a problem, Believe it or not that could cause a compressor failure, A laymen’s way of checking that is if the return sounds like a jet engine, and it suck the filter in the return. We have tools to figure that out and we can use a manometer to measure and make simple repair or add a return, or if your handy most Home improvement stores such as Lowes and Home depot sell what is required to do a simple return addition. I hope this helps and Stay tuned for my next blog as I discuss more about Air filtration and remember i’m available 24/7 for questions
Dirt, Skin cells, Dander, Pollen and everything else in the air will get circulated Thu the Air system, Regardless if unit has a UV system, All of the above mentioned substances need to be filtered out, Back in my last post about mold, we disused that mold requires moisture, food and a cool temp to grow, Well all that exist in a Evaporator coil. So eliminating food source creates a healthy environment plus it will make the unit last longer. One by product of Mold is a acidic substance, This by product can eat threw metal over time causing refrigerant leaks. Secondly if enough foreign matter gets into the coil, It will plug airflow. Result is a Iced up coil, and a damage compressor and yes water leaks.