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The air conditioning filter inside your cooling system provides more protection — and energy savings – than you may know. This humble little device helps protect the A/C from dirt buildup, extend the system’s lifespan, limit needed repairs, ensure the system’s efficient operation, and secure energy savings.

That’s a tall order for such a small air conditioning component. The most common air filter rating is the MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value), which shows how well a filter will capture the smallest particles. However, several other filter efficiency ratings also should be considered. They include:

  • Pressure drop – This rating, also called “filter resistance,” shows how a particular filter will affect air flow in your air conditioning system. A higher pressure drop rating indicates the filter will impede air flow more than a low pressure drop rating. As a filter gets clogged with dust and debris, the pressure drop rating increases.
  • Dust holding capacity – A filter’s capacity to hold dust at a certain airflow, or pressure drop, helps homeowners assess the performance of different filters. Just be sure to compare filters with identical pressure drop ratings when using this rating.
  • Dust spot efficiency – This rating, achieved under testing conditions, shows the filter’s basic capacity to trap particles. However, it may not reflect its true performance in real-time conditions.
  • Initial efficiency – Assessing the filter’s ability to capture particles in its new state, this rating gives you a good idea of the filter’s potential.
    Sustained efficiency – This rating is one of the more useful ones, showing homeowners how well the filter performs over its service life.

Obviously, some of these ratings are more useful than others, particularly those that give you a bird’s eye view into the filter’s performance over time and in day-to-day conditions.

Taking the time to carefully select your home’s air conditioning filter goes a long way toward improving energy efficiency and cleaning your indoor air. Ensure that you and your family reap the benefits that an air filter is designed to deliver. For expert advice when choosing a filter, contact NisAir Air Conditioning & Heating today. We serve homeowners in Martin, Palm Beach, St. Lucie and Indian River counties.