Pet Owners – Which MERV Rating Is Best for You?

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Categories: Merv Ratings, Pets

You love your furry friends, and you consider your pets to be a true part of the family. However, you also know that the pets have dander and they can shed, and this can cause problems with the quality of air in the house. Having clean air in the home is essential and having the right air filters in place can help immensely with this. However, you do need to make sure you are getting the right type and quality of air filter that can deal with all of the pet dander and fur. This means you need to understand MERV filter ratings.

What Are MERV Filter Ratings?

Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, MERV, is a universal rating for air filters. The filters will have a MERV rating that is numbered. The number value will range from MERV 1 to MERV 20, but not all of those filters are going to be ideal for pet owners. You need to make sure that you have the correct option for your HVAC system that will handle the dander. Let’s look at the different rating values so you can see what you should avoid and what is going to work best for your home.

The MERV filters that are rated from 1 to 4 are generally used for window AC units, and they do not do much to improve the air quality for a home. Dander is still likely to be a problem in these cases. The next tier would be the filters from 5 to 8. While these are more robust, and they are going to work well for many homes, they are still not ideal for those who own pets.

Instead, you will want to concentrate on looking for MERV filters with a rating from 9 to 13. These are top-quality filters that have the ability to trap around 90% of the particles that are between three and 10 microns, and up to 70% of particles that are between one and three microns. Those who have pets will find that the filters that are in this range are going to be the best option for their homes.

Of course, you also need to do more than just look at the MERV filter rating when you are choosing an air filter for your system. You also need to think about the size of the filter to make sure it will work with the system. HVAC systems will be able to accommodate these filters without modification, but you still need to be sure you are getting the correct size for your particular system.

If you have a filter that is either too small or too large, it will cause issues. It could allow some of the dust and dander to get into the air, as well as into the HVAC system. If this were to happen, you would eventually have a system that is inefficient and even has some damaged components. This would require repairs that you would likely want to avoid.

Change the Filter Often

Those who have pets will often find that their air filters are going to need to be changed more frequently than those who do not have pets. This is because of the added dander and fur in the air. Make sure that you are changing out the filter and replacing it about every three months. This will ensure that the filter is going to continue working properly, and that a clog will not cause your HVAC system to have to work overtime trying to provide proper airflow.

With the proper MERV filter in place, you can enjoy your pets, and be sure that you have clean air in the house.