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Which AC Filter Option Is Best for Allergy Season?

Which AC Filter Option Is Best for Allergy Season?

Choosing the Best HVAC Filter To Keep Allergies at Bay

Allergies are no laughing matter for many people. And during allergy season, they're even less funny. Unfortunately, indoor air is often worse than outdoor air as measured by the number of pollutants and allergens in the air. The right kind of AC filter can work wonders to keep the allergens down and the members of the household breathing easy. So read on to learn about the best filter for allergy season. The common choices are fiberglass filters, washable filters, and HEPA filters.



Many disposable filters are made from spun fiberglass. They generally provide some protection from allergies, but they are not often very adequate for those with allergies. The reason being is that they have low MERV ratings, which stands for Minimum Efficiency Return Value. The higher the MERV rating on the filter, the smaller the particles that the filter is able to catch. So, those with allergies should look for filters with high MERV ratings.

The MERV rating for most fiberglass filters is between 1 and 4, whereas the rating system goes up to 20. In addition. Fiberglass filters don't last a long time. Most of them recommend replacement every month or so. And since most homeowners have a hard time replacing filters on time, fiberglass isn't often the best option.


There are washable air filters available, which are also known as reusable filters. These are a pretty good option for those homeowners looking to be a bit more environmentally friendly. However, washable HVAC filters aren't a great idea for those with allergies. Plus, many homeowners find that the time they spend washing out the filter is better spent in other ways, so they opt for disposable filters.

The problem with washable air filters is that they must be designed to both catch particles while they're in use and let those particles out again when the filter is being washed. This makes for a low MERV rating - which means more possible allergens in the home. It's possible to find washable filters with MERV ratings in the 4 to 8 range, but even this may be too low for those with severe allergies.


The last type of filter on the list, and the best type for those with allergies, is HEPA. This stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air, and these kinds of filters are rated to remove 99.7% of particles that are 0.3 microns or larger. And for an idea of what that means, most pollen is between 1 and 100 microns in size. This means that the right HEPA filter in the home can work wonders for those with allergies. But there's a catch.

The issue with some HEPA filters is that they're so good at filtering particles that they can cause problems with airflow because they're so dense. This can cause the AC unit to work overtime to cool the house, eventually causing premature issues with various aspects of the AC system. Luckily, a professional HVAC tech can help homeowners decide which HEPA filter is right for their home and their particular HVAC system.

About Snappy Electric, Plumbing, Heating, & Air

The friendly folks at Snappy Electric, Plumbing, Heating, & Air have been serving Marietta, GA for over 15 years. They offer 24/7 emergency service from awesome, expert, and trustworthy techs. They also offer all kinds of financing options as well as up-front pricing. Contact them to schedule filter replacement today!