What is a MERV Rating of 10 and How Does it Affect Air Quality?

The MERV rating of an air filter is a scale from 1 to 16 that describes the minimum efficiency of the air filter. It is used to measure the effectiveness of air filters in capturing particles between 3 and 10 microns in size. A filter with a MERV rating of 8 to 13 is usually considered a high-end filter for household use or high-quality commercial filters. The higher the MERV rating, the more effective the filter is at capturing particles from the air.

For example, if an air filter can capture at least 20% of E1 particles, 65% of E2 and 85% of E3 particles, it will receive a MERV 11 rating. Mathematics suggests that if you want the best air quality, you should buy a filter in the MERV 13-16 category. However, a high MERV rating on an air filter generally means that the filter is thicker and that the HVAC system will have to work harder to circulate air throughout the house. E1, E2 and E3 particles are particle range sizes used to test air filters to determine the MERV rating.

With Filter King's filter selection tool, you can mark exactly the size, thickness and MERV rating you're looking for. A filter with a MERV rating of around 10 to 12 is sufficient to remove most of the particles that cause allergies from the air in the house. Some air filters, especially those with higher MERV values, can prevent air flow due to improved air filtration. In 1987, the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers designed the MERV rating scale to provide a more accurate picture of an air filter's capabilities.

Activities such as renovating the home, leaving outside doors and having children play in the house can accelerate the accumulation of dust and particles in the air filter. You are now equipped to monitor your air filter and change it regularly to the right MERV value for your home and family.

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