Does A Higher Merv Rating Raise Electric Bill?

It’s not always better to have a higher MERV rating. Higher-rated filters can trap more particles, but they also put more strain on your HVAC system and raise your energy bill. In most cases, a filter that is somewhere in the middle will suffice.

Is there a disadvantage to using high-MERV filters?

Furnace filters are one of the most widely discussed furnace components, but many people are still unaware of how to clean them effectively.

Furnace filters trap dust, hair, and other particles in the air before it reaches the furnace’s blower fan. As a result, the air quality in your home improves by preventing particles from recirculating.

All of this sounds fantastic, and it may appear that the more robust the filter is, the better it is for your home – but this is not the case.

Airflow difficulties might occur if your filter is either too unclean or overly resistive, reducing efficiency and performance. Filters use the MERV rating system to determine resistance. In other words, the higher the MERV rating, the more durable the filter. When it comes to selecting the right furnace filter for your home, the MERV rating is crucial.

Learn how to maintain your

The acronym MERV stands for “Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value.” The MERV rating on your filter is meant to show you which filter is the best fit for your home. While the air filter is meant to control the number of unwanted air particles entering your home, the MERV rating on your filter is meant to show you which filter is the best fit for your home. Less particulates and other contaminants will be allowed into your home if the MERV rating is greater.

It seems quite straightforward; after all, you’d want as few particles as possible, right?

While the highest MERV ratings are best for air quality, they might be harmful to your HVAC system.

A higher MERV value indicates greater resistance, which results in less airflow. Airflow is a topic that will come up frequently when researching HVAC systems. That’s because it’s critical for your furnace’s or air handler’s function and lifetime. Airflow is also essential for a comfortable environment.

If your furnace’s MERV rating is too high, it may compel it to work too hard, leaving it prone to harm. Furthermore, you may not receive the air velocity required to reach all areas of your home, resulting in temperature discrepancies.

The MERV scale ranges from 1 to 20. The minimal size of the particles filtered out decreases as the rating rises, implying that more particles are collected. The ratings can be categorized according to the size of particles they filter, as shown in the chart below:

A micrometre is one millionth of a metre in length. Pollen, dust mites, cockroach debris, sanding dust, spray paint dust, textile fibers, and carpet fibers will all be captured even at the lowest MERV rating (1-4). In a residential residence, filters with a MERV rating of 17-20 are usually never required.

A MERV rating of 13-16 is considered hospital-level air quality, so you probably don’t need much more than that in your house. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, filters with MERV ratings of 7 to 13 are typically indistinguishable from those with higher MERV ratings, but they will allow your system to work more efficiently.

The MERV grade you select from 7 to 13 is determined by the level of filtration you require. If anyone in your household suffers from allergies or asthma, a higher MERV rating is beneficial. If no one in your family has any breathing problems, a lower filter, such as a 7, will save you money on your energy bill.

Is MERV 13 too high for a house?

The highest-rated air filters for household use are MERV 13 air filters. Any air filter with a rating more than 13 will limit air movement to the point that it may harm your HVAC system, resulting in additional costs to repair it.

The MERV rating system ranges from 1 to 20, with 20 being the highest rating for filters used in locations like hospitals. While the MERV rating can go higher than 13, it’s advised to avoid going any higher in your home. Those with the following conditions should consider utilizing the MERV 13 filter:

The MERV 13 air filters will deliver the purest air quality possible in your home when used with an air filter. What a MERV 13 filter can filter out that a filter with a lower rating can’t:

Is MERV 11 too high for a household environment?

Using an air filter with an excessively high MERV rating is just as bad as using one with an excessively low MERV rating. Higher MERV ratings allow for more filtering, however the thickness of the filter material can hinder airflow. Restricted airflow can reduce comfort, increase energy use, and hasten the deterioration of HVAC components. Using an air filter with a high MERV rating, in particular, can cause damage to the compressor, heat exchanger, and air conditioner coil.

A MERV 11 air filter isn’t too high for most household applications. Anything below a MERV 13 air filter should, in general, provide extremely efficient air cleaning in a home without obstructing airflow. Air filters with a MERV 14 rating or above, on the other hand, are meant for commercial HVAC systems that can handle thicker filter material.

Would a MERV 11 rating be detrimental to your HVAC system?

The quick answer is that it can, but it’s not a big deal unless you’re in a truly bad situation. Most current HVAC systems can cope with higher MERV filters without issue, which is why millions of households rely on them. The main danger with high-efficiency air filters is that they are left in place for extended periods of time. It’s unlikely that you’ll have any filter-related troubles with your HVAC system if you keep up with changing your filters.

Is the MERV 12 rating for HVAC equipment too high?

If you’re familiar with MERV ratings, this section probably won’t teach you anything new.

If not, this material will answer the question “what is MERV rating?” “What MERV rating should my furnace or air handler have?” and other similar opening inquiries

MERV Rating: MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, and it is a measurement of the smallest (minimum) particles that a filter will effectively (efficiency) remove when tested – with verifiable and reportable test findings (reporting value).

The smaller the particles eliminated and the more of them removed, the greater the MERV.

  • Most 3+ millimeter particles, such as lint, dust, most pollen and mold spores, dust mites, and their waste, are effectively removed by MERV 8 filters.
  • Most 1.0 to 3.0 micron particles, as well as larger particles, are removed by MERV 10 MERV 12 filters. All of the particles described under MERV 8 filters, as well as pet dander, germs, most smoke/smog particles, and most auto emission particles, fall into this category.
  • Most contaminants are removed by MERV 13MERV 16 filters.
  • Particles ranging in size from 3 to 1.0 microns in diameter, as well as larger ones. All of the foregoing is removed, as well as the majority of viruses and smells.

Which MERV filter is appropriate for your furnace or air handler? In a nutshell, the solution is: The MERV specified by the manufacturer is the best MERV rating for your heating and air conditioning equipment. It’s normally between 8 and 12 MERV.

If you don’t have the owner’s handbook for your furnace or air handler, you can find a PDF of it online by searching for the brand and model furnace.

When in doubt, go with a high-flow MERV 8 to MERV 10 filter that won’t harm your furnace or air handler.

Alternatively, you can consult a professional HVAC technician to determine which filter is appropriate for your furnace or air handler.

Let’s look at why a high MERV furnace filter might not be the best option for your furnace.

What is the best MERV rating for home use?

In general, a home’s MERV rating should be between 8 and 10. These filters will collect a substantial percentage of airborne particles and enhance indoor air quality without considerably increasing your energy expenditures.

What is Covid’s MERV rating?

The ability of a filter to capture particles is measured using Minimum Efficiency Reporting Values, or MERV. Smaller particles, such as viruses, can be trapped by filters with MERV-13 or higher ratings. As a standard, a MERV-8 filter is incorporated in many house HVAC systems. Upgrading to a MERV-13 rated filter, or the highest rated filter that your HVAC system fan and filter slot can support, may improve the system’s effectiveness in eliminating viruses from circulated air. Users should check their HVAC manual or an HVAC professional before making any adjustments to the air filter in their HVAC system.

Make sure the HVAC filter is properly installed. Also, because HVAC systems only filter the air when the fan is working, try running the system fan for longer periods of time or continually. Many systems can be programmed to run the fan even when there is no heat or cooling. If your system has one, you can also help by opening the outside air inlet. This isn’t the case with most home systems, though.

Using an improved HVAC filter alone is insufficient to protect individuals from COVID-19. An improved HVAC filter can be part of a plan to protect yourself and your family when used in conjunction with other best practices recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

For more information on how to protect your family from COVID-19, go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.

For information on how to set up and use a portable air cleaner, consult the EPA’s “Guide to Air Cleaners in the Home.”

Return to Frequently Asked Questions regarding Coronavirus Disease and Indoor Air Quality (COVID-19).

Is it true that MERV 13 filters are bad for furnaces?

The greatest MERV value that is safe for home furnaces is MERV 13; greater grades are typically employed in commercial systems. If you’re unsure about the MERV to use, keep in mind that ASHRAE recommends MERV 6 or greater.

Is it better to use MERV 11 or 13?

The particle arrestance of MERV 11 furnace filters is slightly over 90%. MERV 13 HVAC filters, on the other hand, have a particle arrestance of roughly 98 percent. It is, without a doubt, far more efficient. Those who live in a moderately polluted location, have mild allergies, or own a pet will benefit from MERV 11 air filters.

Is it necessary to replace my MERV 11 filter on a regular basis?

Replacement of furnace filters is recommended every 3-4 months for MERV 8, 6 months for MERV 10 and 11, and once a year for MERV 16. Whether deciding when to update your house air filter, there are various other considerations to consider.