Is a Merv 8 Filter the Right Choice for You?

MERV 8 filters are 90 percent efficient on particles that are 3 to 10 microns in size.


1 to 4 are effective for controlling larger particles, such as sanding dust, spray paint dust, lint and carpet fibers. Based on these characteristics, a Merv 8 is considered a superior filtration compared to air filters with a lower MERV rating. But is filtration enough? In many cases, a Merv 8 air filter is more than adequate.

However, if you are concerned about outdoor air pollution, family members with respiratory problems, or pets in the house, then a higher merv rating might be a good idea. Before you buy one, there are a few things you should know. While these filters do a great job of trapping pollen, dust, mold and other basic air pollutants, they are not ideal if you have allergies or pets. In addition, if you live near smoke pollution, we recommend that you choose a filter with a higher MERV rating.

When you change from a cheap fiberglass air filter to a Merv 8 filter, you add a lot more protection. In MERV 8, you're now trapping and trapping the dangerous allergens that cause outbreaks for most allergy sufferers. So why use them? The main reason is that some older units can only handle these filters. A couple of decades ago, lower quality filters were almost the only ones used in homes.

Technology for HVAC units has progressed since then, and most modern units in recent years should be able to have a MERV 8 filter at least. However, older units may not be able to have enough air pressure to force air through a higher efficiency filter. Attempting to do so could cause significant problems, as well as the need for repairs. The table below shows the minimum threshold at which a filter must operate to obtain a specific MERV rating. Using an air filter with a MERV rating that is too high is as bad as using one that is too low.

Using an oven filter with a MERV rating higher than your use case requires can have adverse effects. Changing the air filter in your HVAC system is almost the easiest maintenance you can perform as a homeowner. MERV 13 air filters also help new buildings achieve LEED certification.

Merv 8 air

filters are almost as affordable as less efficient products, making them good value for money. Therefore, it is in the best interest of every homeowner to analyze the MERV rating system, what it entails and what rating would be right for their air filtration needs. Finer particles will have no problem passing through a fiberglass filter, and those that are larger will filter less effectively than with a pleated filter. In contrast, a high MERV rating indicates that the filter does a good job of removing particles from the air.

When removing the old filter, be sure to pay attention to the direction in which the arrows on the filter point to know which direction the air cleaner goes in.Merv 8 air filters are very common because they are quite a complete option, so you might think that they are excellent in price but poor in performance. If the air cleaner is installed inside the return grille inside your home, then the wire mesh should be on the opposite side of the grille, where it is not visible. While ASHRAE recommends MERV 13 and 14, it is best to select a filter with the highest possible MERV rating for your specific HVAC system. Keeping pets would require a MERV 10 to control their dander, which tends to have smaller particles than the contaminants discussed above. If you're new to selecting air filters, you may still not be sure what the best option is despite the detailed explanation above. In this case, it's best to consult an expert who can help you determine which type of filter will work best for your needs.