What Kind of Furnace Filter Should I Use?

Choosing a furnace filter

When it comes to home maintenance projects nothing could be easier than changing your furnace filter. Changing your furnace filter on a regular basis helps keep your furnace and air ducts clean, improving the air quality in your home. It can also extend the lifespan of your furnace and air conditioner by reducing the amount of dirt and debris that accumulates on the motor and sensitive electronic parts. Finally, a clean filter creates less airflow resistance, allowing the blower motor to work more efficiently, saving energy. and it can save you energy dollars.

What's the Best Kind of Furnace Filter?

Let's take a look at three common types. The first type is the disposable fiberglass filter. These have been around for decades and are relatively inexpensive. The problem is, they only trap the largest particles of dirt, lint and other debris from entering the furnace. Smaller particulate matter like mold and pollen pass right through and can end up circulating throughout your ductwork.

Another popular type of furnace filter is the disposable pleated filter made from cotton or polyester fibers. These are better at removing smaller particles than a fiberglass filter. However, they usually need to be changed more frequently because they are so dense they can fill up with dirt and reduce air flow significantly.

Lastly, there's a polarized media air cleaner, also called an electronic air cleaner. This kind of filter uses an electronically charged surface that causes fine particles to cling to the filter surface. Small particles like pollen, pet dander and fine dust that would pass through other filters are trapped. This type of filter effectively turns the filter into a whole-house air cleaner. While this type of filter is more expansive than a fiberglass or pleated filter, in many cases the media filter can be cleaned several times before replacement, which can reduce the cost over time.

If you suffer from allergies or have other breathing problems, polarized filters and HEPA air filters work best for removing allergens from the air.

Selecting the right filter depends on your furnace and your needs. If you would like more information on selecting the right filter for your home, give Rapid Response Plumbing Heating and Air a call, we'll be happy to help answer your heating and cooling questions.

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