When it comes to air filtration, the MERV rating system is a great way to evaluate the efficiency of a filter. The Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) is a scale used to measure the effectiveness of an air filter in trapping particles of different sizes. The higher the MERV rating, the greater the air filtration capabilities of a particular filter. The MERV scale ranges from 1 to 16, with 1 being the lowest and 16 being the highest.
A MERV 9 will trap less than 50% of particles with a size of 1, 0-3 or 0 microns, while a MERV 10 will stop at 64%, a MERV 11 will reach 79%, and a MERV 12 is capable of capturing up to 89%. When researching HVAC systems, airflow is an important factor to consider. Airflow is key to the performance and longevity of your oven or air controller, as well as for providing a comfortable home. A MERV 10 filter will filter 85% of 3.0-10.0 μm particles, while a MERV 12 filter will filter 90% of the same particles.
The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers designed the MERV rating scale in 1987 to provide a more accurate picture of an air filter's capabilities. Pleated filters that are MERV 8 to 13 can effectively filter small particles and reduce the pressure drop. Filters with a MERV rating of 8 to 13 are usually high-end filters for household use or high-quality commercial filters. It's important to understand how the MERV classification chart works so that you can choose the air filters with the right ratings for your needs.
The higher MERV rating means greater resistance, which means less airflow. However, it also means that an air filter will capture more dust than one with a lower rating. When selecting an air filter, it's important to find one that offers both particle filtering and energy efficiency.