Should I Buy Filters with the Highest MERV Ratings?

A MERV rating is essential because it allows you to determine the effectiveness of an air filter and help choose the best choice for your unique requirements. For instance, you might desire a higher MERV rating if you live with someone who has allergies. 

You can balance your needs for energy efficiency and air quality using the MERV scale. The rating provides the air filter’s worst-case scenario so you can find a better idea of how it will function. You can get away and save money on your energy cost by using a lower MERV rating. Your filter’s resistance or dirtiness might affect airflow, which can reduce performance and efficiency. 

What is MERV Rating for Air filters? 

“Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value” is known as MERV. The MERV rating on your filter is intended to indicate which filter is the best fit for your home, while the air filter is intended to limit the amount of unwelcomed air particles entering your residence. Less particulates and other impurities will enter your home with a higher MERV rating.  

The MERV rating system was developed in 1987 by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers to provide a more precise image of the capabilities of an air filter. MERV was created to provide an equilibrium between particle filtering and energy efficiency, in contrast to prior scales that focused on the requirement to enhance the number of particles.  

According to the levels, MERVs 1-4 are considered the lowest, offering your HVAC systems with the lowest amount of filtration and protection. Residential and commercial locations can be generally covered by MERVs 5-8, which can provide a medium amount of filtration. Superior MERVs are those between 9 and 12. They perform their duties well and provide excellent protection for their places. The finest, top-tier MERVs 13–16 are the ones that give the highest filtration and purification, making them the cleanest option for HVAC systems. 

Are Filters with Highest MERV Ratings Better? 

You might believe that a higher MERV rating is always better, but this is incorrect. The smaller the particles are in an HVAC filter, the more efficiently air can pass through it. This may increase airflow resistance beyond what a system is intended to handle, making it unproductive. Lowering the airflow might probably make your home’s air quality much worse and put harmful pressure on the furnace or AC system’s fan.  

You’ll be capable of selecting air filters well with MERV ratings which are ideal for you once you realize how the MERV rating table operates. It’s essential to remember that the MERV scale is a widely used measurement. As a result, you can utilize it to contrast various air filter brands. 

A numerical table with values ranging from one to twenty makes up the MERV rating table. An air filter with the highest MERV rating will also capture the most particles, whereas those with the lowest ratings will do the opposite.  

Although the ASHRAE recommends MERV 13 and 14, it’s ideal for getting a filter only with the best MERV rating available for your specific HVAC system. When it relates to home air filtration, HEPA filters are thought to be the best since they can eliminate at least 99.97 percent of airborne impurities that are 0.3 microns in size. 

Less airflow results from more resistance which is represented by a higher MERV rating. Airflow will frequently come up when investigating HVAC systems. This is necessary so that your radiator or air handler will operate properly and last a long time. Another essential for a comfortable home is airflow. Your furnace may have to work harder and be more susceptible to damage if the MERV rating is set too high. 

The air quality in a hospital is often rated between a MERV rating of 13 and 16, so your home probably doesn’t need anything higher. The United States Environmental Protection Agency states that although filters with MERV ratings between 7 and 13 are frequently comparable to those with higher ratings, they will empower your system to operate considerably and more effectively. 


The most useful and reliable filter solutions for cooling and heating systems and others are identified with the use of MERV ratings. Generally, home systems can effectively remove airborne pollutants with air filters rated MERV 7–12, whereas hospital and pharmaceutical production facilities frequently use filters rated MERV 13–20.  

Depending on the filter, you should remember to change it every month, 2 months, or 3 months. If you don’t change your filter as suggested, it will acquire dirt and dust, which will make it less able to filter and more constricting. Residential air filter suppliers like Custom Filters Direct can help you get custom air filters to perfectly fit your HVAC unit. Check them out! 

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