When it comes to choosing the right air filter for your home, it's important to understand the differences between MERV 8, MERV 11, and MERV 13. The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) uses particle size to classify MERV values. The MERV scale is not linear; the difference between a MERV 6 and a MERV 8 is almost double in the percentage of particles captured. The worst percentage of the six tests is selected as the official measure used to determine the MERV rating of a filter.
MERV 8 filters are designed to capture particles between 3 and 10 microns in size, while MERV 11 filters can capture particles as small as 1 micron. This means that MERV 11 filters are more efficient than MERV 8 filters because they can capture smaller particles. MERV 13 filters, on the other hand, are designed to capture particles as small as 0.3 microns. This means that they offer additional protection against pet dander, dust mites, automobile emissions, and dust that can damage the lungs.
If you're concerned about the effects of breathing fine air particles, then a MERV 11 air filter is a good choice.It should also be noted that filters at the lower end of the MERV scale are not even tested for efficiency in capturing E1 and E2 particulate matter. If you want to at least clean your air and handle dust, mold, pollen, and bacteria, then a MERV 8 will do the job. However, if you're looking for even better air quality than what the MERV 8 can offer, then a MERV 11 or 13 is a better choice.At the heart of an optimally functioning HVAC system is an air filter with the right MERV rating for you. Since a high MERV rating means that more particulates will be removed from the air, you can first think about using air filters with the highest MERV rating.
You are now equipped to monitor your air filter and change it regularly with the right MERV value for your home and family.