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What Is A MERV Rating And What Does It Mean?

December 15th, 2017 by cverdone

MERV Rating

Living in a house with dust and viruses circulating around the air can make you and your family sick. If you want to determine the efficiency of your air filter, look at the MERV rating. A MERV rating stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. This determines how well your air filter traps pollutants, dust, and other debris in your home. To get to know more about what MERV ratings are, here are a few things to consider.

The Different MERV Ratings

Is your house very dusty? Do you or your family members suffer from asthma? To prevent sneezing or wheezing in your home, choose an air filter with higher ratings. The ratings determines how efficient the filter is at capturing the particles in the air. Each number has a special function. The higher the rating, the better it works. MERV ratings range from 1-20, with 1 being the lowest and 20 being the highest.
When you see what an air filter with an MERV rating of 1, it captures large dirt and insects in the air. It doesn’t work as well as air filters with better MERV ratings. Air filters with MERV ratings from 5-8 can better catch finer particles. Air filters with a MERV rating of 9-12 are common in hospitals because they trap finder debris. This includes fumes, emission, and large bacteria. The best MERV rating ranges from 17-20, and you can trust an air filter with that rating. It captures viruses and small smoke particles and provides much cleaner air. Also keep in mind that to have a fully-functional air filter, your HVAC system must do the same.

Where To Find The MERV Rating

When you’re looking at air filter options, you can find the information of an air filter’s MERV rating in the manual. If the MERV rating is not on a filter, then they will often use the Microparticle Performance Rating, or MPR. You can usually find MERV to MPR conversion websites online.

What Kind Of MERV Rating To Use

Depending on the HVAC system you use, check what kind of MERV rating you need by looking at your system’s manual. If you’re above the limit it can reduce the energy efficiency. Plus, the problems that will come about will be more expensive.
Do you need more help deciding what kind of MERV rating to use? Contact the HVAC professionals at Thornton Heating to help you with MERV ratings. We are happy to help so call us today at (847) 905-1608.