Which Air Filter is Right for You: Merv 8 or Merv 11?

MERV 11 air filters are slightly more expensive than a standard filter, but paying a few dollars more per filter is generally worth the extra efficiency. Some situations, such as homes with allergies or respiratory problems, smokers, or pets, warrant a higher MERV 11 rating. MERV 8 filters should be changed every 2-3 months for maximum efficiency, while MERV 11 filters should be changed every 1-3 months depending on the season and the intensity of work of your HVAC system. MERV 8 filters can trap particles with a size of 3.0-10.0 microns, while MERV 11 filters can capture smaller particles and offer additional protection against pet dander, dust mites, self-emissions, and lung-damaging dust.

MERV 13 filters are even more efficient and can filter out small viruses and germs. If you have children or pets, a MERV 11 is required. A MERV 13 is also recommended for homes with the elderly or infants, as well as those with respiratory problems such as asthma. It's important to consider how much you use your HVAC system and how old it is when choosing an air filter.

If you have an older system, make sure you get an oven filter with a MERV rating lower than the maximum for your system. Overall, if you prioritize air quality and may have to manage asthma, severe allergies, and other similar circumstances, a MERV 13 is a great option. If none of these variables apply to your home and there is no other reason why you need a higher level of filtration in your home, then a MERV 8 filter is probably the best option for you.