Health & Fitness

How To Compare Air Filters

When you purchase an air filter, you’ll notice some differences between models. Most are rated based on their efficiency in removing airborne particles, which is the industry standard known as Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV). Lower numbers signify weaker filters while higher values indicate stronger filters. Some brands also have their own rating system. These differences can make a huge difference, especially if your goal is to find the best filter for you.

20x20x1 air filter merv 13

Rating MERV

The MERV rating is an important measurement of the filtration efficiency of an air filter. The higher the MERV rating, the better the filter is at trapping airborne particles. The ability to capture particles in different sizes is a measure of the efficiency of air filters. In a laboratory setting, 12 different size particles were used to measure the effectiveness of filters. The largest particle size is approximately 50 um, while 40 um is the smallest. The particles were then divided into three categories: E1 (0.3-1.0 micrometers), E2 (1.0-3.0 um), and E3 (3-to 10.0 um).


The efficiency of air filters is measured by comparing the percentage of particles captured by the filter with the number of particles that are present in the air. The Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) is also known as efficiency. The highest number is 16. The higher the MERV, the better the filter. HEPA filters have higher efficiency and are better at collecting particles. It is common to use MERV numbers to compare different types air filters.

Capacity holding

When buying a 20x20x1 air filter merv 13, it’s important to look at the holding capacity. The filter’s holding capacity is the amount of dust it can hold. This is typically measured in cubic centimeters. Higher numbers indicate greater holding capacity. This is a key performance indicator and is determined by EN779 and ISO16890 tests. A compact filter is often tested by the same standard. MERV 8 filters use a meltblown synthetic media that’s stronger than fiberglass. It also features antimicrobial options and layers.


The volume of air delivered can determine the cost of air filters. The total cost for the filter’s operation, including the initial purchase price and installation fees, is then divided by how many filters are used. This calculation takes into account the energy costs that are incurred during filter operation, as well as the cost of disposal. A typical HVAC filter’s life span is less than one year. This means that you can amortize the cost of filters over a longer time.


Reusability of air filters is a great way to save money. Reusable filters don’t have to be replaced as frequently as disposable air filters. These filters can last several years if they are properly maintained. However, they can be damaged by dust, wear and tear, and may eventually become ineffective. This will save you money and prevent you from having to purchase another filter.

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