Can Air Filters be Too Restrictive?

Burned motors and controls can result from overly restrictive filters. Learn more about how choosing an efficient yet effective oven filter can help reduce energy costs while avoiding hardware damage.

Can Air Filters be Too Restrictive?

Burned motors and controls can result from overly restrictive filters. Coils, motors, and blowers can also be easily clogged by weak filters, creating greater fan usage, resulting in higher energy costs. The short answer is yes, but it's not really a problem, except in extreme circumstances. Most modern HVAC systems have no problem working with higher MERV filters, which is why millions of homeowners depend on them. The main risk of high-efficiency air filters comes from the fact that they are not modified for long periods of time.

If you keep abreast of changing filters, you are unlikely to experience any filter related issues with your HVAC system. When an air filter is too efficient, it can cause low airflow. You can check the effectiveness of your air filter by reviewing its Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) rating. Ratings range from 1 (lowest possible filtration) to 20 (highest possible filtration).

Simply put, the higher the MERV rating on an air filter, the less dust particles and contaminants will pass through it and vice versa. MERV ratings might lead you to believe that high-efficiency air filters are the way to go. However, sometimes they can work so well that they make your HVAC system less efficient because they block airflow too much. This leads to higher energy bills and could damage the oven if it overheats. What is the best air filter for your home? One that removes most contaminants in the air, but allows your HVAC system to do its job effortlessly. Learn more about the four main types of air filters and which one is best for your home. Could Using Stronger Filters Lead to Airflow? It seems obvious that a stronger air filter will reduce airflow in your HVAC system.

However, considering the reduction in airflow caused by a high MERV filter is often an afterthought for most homeowners. Using an air filter with a MERV rating that is too high is as bad as using one that is too low. Air filters with higher MERV ratings can filter more, but the thickness of the filter material can restrict airflow. Restricted airflow can decrease comfort, increase energy use, and accelerate wear and tear on HVAC components. In particular, using an air cleaner with a MERV rating that is too high can damage the compressor, heat exchanger, and air conditioner coil.Air conditioners can turn off if fine filters restrict airflow.

The air conditioner is also stressed by a dirty filter that slows down airflow, causing the system to work harder. In addition, your system may not be able to provide enough heating or cooling to the home or just the distance of one or two rooms become uncomfortable. But be careful not to go too far with your filters. Some HVAC systems aren't strong enough to push air through more restrictive filters that block smaller particles, that is, those with a higher MERV or CADR rating, which can reduce airflow and cause your home to heat and cool less efficiently. Working too hard on an HVAC system can also result in hardware damage and costly repair.

Consult your HVAC system manual to determine the strength of your model or call an HVAC technician. Even though fiberglass pleated filters are very common and are consistently recommended, there is still a misconception that filters can cause damage to your unit because they supposedly restrict airflow. Deeper pleated filters allow dirt to spread over a larger surface area, reducing pressure drop and allowing filter changes less frequently without significantly affecting system performance. The different pleated air filters are designed with different properties and results in mind, which is important to remember when buying your own filter. Ironically, the effectiveness of low-efficiency air filters increases as the filter becomes loaded with dirt and dust. If you're worried about the effects of inhaling fine air particles, that's another reason to choose a MERV 11 air filter instead of a MERV 8 air filter.

However, this is the case with any oven filter that removes contaminants and dust from the atmosphere within its property, as it will continuously filter the air. The wire mesh also helps prevent the air filter from collapsing when air circulates through the filter and HVAC system. This won't be a problem if you have the right filter for your unit, as your unit will have the power to keep the air moving and pushing through the dense filter material. First, it takes time for the filter to charge sufficiently for a beneficial effect, so that everything that passes through the filter ends up in your system or in your home. MERV 11 air filters are slightly more expensive than a standard filter, but paying a few dollars more per filter is generally worth the extra efficiency. They may seem to be almost the same, but MERV 8 air filters and MERV 11 air filters have a few different differences.

Since air filters in many residential homes contribute more than half of that pressure, it's clear that air filters are responsible for a large part of the pressure drop in an HVAC system. Meanwhile, air filters with a MERV 14 rating or higher are designed for commercial HVAC systems that can handle the coarsest filter material. Many air conditioning manufacturers recommend using an air cleaner with a MERV rating of 8-9 to balance air allergen filtering with the cost and stress of the HVAC system. STAR Heating & Cooling heating and cooling experts share how to choose the right oven filter and why you should never blindly choose a replacement filter. There are many types of filters such as media filters and HEPA filters and they all adapt to different circumstances.

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