What is MERV rating on HVAC Filters?



What is MERV rating on HVAC filters?

MERV stands for “minimum efficiency reporting value” and indicates how well a particular air filter will be able to filter out particles from the air. MERV ratings range from 1-16. A higher number is better; filters with higher numbers can filter out smaller particles. Most HVAC units will use a filter with a MERV rating of between five and 12. These air filters can catch things like pollen, dust particles, pet dander, mold, and carpet fibers – Climate ControlOpens in a new tab.

MERV means Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value which was developed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioner Engineers – ASHRAE. MERV ratings vary from 1 to 16. The higher the MERV rating, the more efficient the filter will be in trapping airborne particles. Another consideration is air flow through the HVAC system. Leaving a dirty air filter in place or using a filter that is too restrictive may result in low air flow and possibly cause the system to malfunction- CoolRayOpens in a new tab.

The Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV, is a third-party rating system for HVAC filters. It provides a means for consumers to compare the effectiveness of various filters. The higher the MERV number, the more effective a filter is at removing contaminants. Most residential furnaces  are equipped with, and work well with, a 1” thick filter that is MERV-rated 3 to 5, or a 4” or 5” thick media type filter that is MERV-rated 6 to 8- CarrierOpens in a new tab.

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