Air Filters 101: Filters for Your Florida Home

Air filters play a crucial role in keeping our homes comfortable and safe. In Florida, where air conditioning is essential, having an effective air filter is even more important. However, with so many options on the market, it can be difficult to choose the right filter for your home. In this blog, we’ll explore two of the most popular types of air filters: replaceable air filters and washable electrostatic filters, including the electronic air filter that is a subtype of the replaceable air filter.

How Regular Filters Work

Regular air filters are made from a pleated media with a disposable cardboard frame. As air circulates through your home, the air conditioner or heater pulls air through the filter. Just like the lint trap in your dryer, regular filters capture small airborne particles such as dust, dirt, pollen, and other irritants. These filters typically come in one of three forms: a standard one-inch filter, a four-inch media filter, or a HEPA filter.

While HEPA filters are known for their high efficiency, they are typically only used in hospitals and other similar environments. Most home heating and air conditioning systems can only handle a standard or media filter. Regular filters are easy to replace and come in a variety of sizes and MERV ratings.

How Electrostatic Filters Work

Electrostatic air filters use static electricity to give particles a positive charge as they enter the filter. This charge is released as the air continues through subsequent layers of the filter, ultimately resulting in the particle getting trapped. Electrostatic filters are reusable, so you don’t need to replace them every few months like you do with a regular replaceable air filter. However, they do need to be washed, which can add another chore to your to-do list. Keep in mind that electrostatic filters may have a lower SEER rating, which can decrease the efficiency of your HVAC system.

If you or anyone in your household is prone to allergic reactions, such as a runny nose or other symptoms triggered by exposure to dust mite allergens, it’s best to invest in an energy star-rated filter or electronic air cleaner, which can effectively capture dust mites and other particles that trigger allergic reactions. Additionally, regular maintenance of your condensing unit and heat pumps is crucial, especially in Florida’s warm and humid climate. Dust and debris can accumulate in the unit and cause it to work harder, leading to higher energy bills and a shorter lifespan for your system. Moreover, cleaning upholstered furniture and regularly changing air filters can go a long way in reducing the number of allergens in your home.

The Effectiveness of Electrostatic Filters

Air filters are assigned a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) rating, which denotes their efficiency. The higher the filter’s MERV rating, the more effective it is at capturing airborne particles that can trigger allergy and asthma symptoms. Electrostatic air filters typically have a low MERV rating between one and four, which means they capture less than 20% of dust.

Filters that have a MERV rating of four or below only stop particles that are greater than 10 pm in size, including dust mite allergens, pollen, and carpet fibers. While these filters are more affordable, they are not suitable for people with dust mite allergies and asthma. To effectively capture airborne particles, it’s best to use air filters with a MERV rating between 9 and 12, which can capture particles as small as 1.0 pm in size. These filters are commonly used in energy-efficient central air conditioners and split systems, which deliver cooled air throughout your home.

Regular maintenance of your air conditioning units and air filters is crucial, particularly if you or anyone in your household has allergy and asthma. Dust and debris can accumulate in the unit and in the filter, reducing the system’s energy efficiency and making it less effective in capturing allergens. Regular cleaning of the air filters and replacement every few months can significantly improve the indoor air quality in your home, reducing the risk of allergy and asthma symptoms.The Effectiveness of Regular Filters

Regular residential air filters can have a MERV rating of up to 12. While you can find regular filters with a low MERV rating between one and four, these filters come with higher MERV ratings as well. Filters that have a rating between five and eight capture particles as small as 3.0 pm in size, which includes microbial growth, hair spray, and pudding mix. Regular filters with a MERV rating between nine and twelve stop particles as small as 1.0 pm in size, which includes humidifier dust, legionella, and automobile emissions. These are the most efficient filters that you can use in your home. Filters with a MERV of 13 or higher are for commercial buildings, hospitals, and clean rooms.

Regular Filters vs. Electrostatic Filters: Which One to Choose?

When it comes to choosing the right air filter for your home, it’s important to consider your needs. If you suffer from asthma or allergies, a regular filter with a high MERV rating is your best choice. These filters can capture the smallest particles that can trigger respiratory issues. For those with asthma or allergies, a MERV rating between 9 and 12 is recommended. These filters can capture particles as small as 1.0 pm in size, which includes humidifier dust, legionella, and automobile emissions.

In conclusion, choosing the right air filter is an essential part of keeping your home comfortable and safe. Whether you opt for a regular replaceable filter or a washable electrostatic filter, make sure to select one that meets your needs and budget. If you need help selecting the right filter for your Florida home, or if you need assistance with your air conditioning system, contact Pronto at 813-540-7736. Our team of experts can provide you with the advice and services you need to keep your home cool and comfortable year-round.

0/5 (0 Reviews)
Share this blog

Recent Posts

4 Reasons Why Your AC Drain Pan is Overflowing

4 Reasons Why Your AC Drain Pan is Overflowing In the Sunshine State, a functioning air conditioner is as essential as the sun itself. But what happens when you notice your air conditioner's drain pan is full of water, transforming your tranquil abode into a mini...

How Can You Repair a Home Air Conditioner in Oldsmar?

Oldsmar, Florida - a charming city known for its rich history, local attractions, and the need for a reliable home air conditioning system. Whether you're exploring the Oldsmar Flea Market or enjoying a family day at R.E. Old's Park, returning to a cool and refreshing...

Navigating HVAC Installation and Costs in Palm Harbor, FL

Greetings, Palm Harbor! As your trusted HVAC experts at Pronto Service Pros, we're here to guide you through the intricate world of heating and cooling systems. Whether you're a homeowner or a building management professional, understanding the ins and outs of HVAC...

When Heat Fails in Dunedin: A Detailed Heating Repair Guide

Greetings, Dunedin homeowners and building management professionals! As we all know, our beloved city is known for its warm, sunny weather. But when the temperature drops and our heating systems fail, it can be as chilling as a dip in the Gulf of Mexico in January. At...

Free Estimate

Now is the time to upgrade your system.

Easily Book Online