When it comes to air filtration, the MERV rating system is designed to help us determine the most effective and efficient air filter options for heating and cooling systems. MERV 8 and 11 are two of the most common ratings, but which one is better? To answer this question, it's important to understand the differences between these two ratings. MERV 8 and 11 air filters may look very similar, but they have some significant distinctions. MERV 11 filters are better at trapping fine particles that are 2.5 microns or smaller, which can enter lung tissue and enter the bloodstream.
MERV 8 filters, on the other hand, are not as effective at trapping these particles. When it comes to changing your filter, experts recommend changing MERV 8 filters every 2-3 months. For MERV 11 filters, it's important to consider how much you use your HVAC system. If you use it more in winter and summer, you should change the filter more often than in spring and autumn.
MERV 11 filters are also better at trapping pet dander, smoke, smog, and air from coughs and sneezes than MERV 8 filters. If you have children or pets in your home, a MERV 11 filter is recommended. It's also essential for allergy sufferers. For maximum efficiency, you should change your MERV 11 filter every 1 to 3 months depending on the season and the intensity of work of your HVAC system.
If you're looking for even more filtration power, a MERV 13 filter is an excellent option. It can trap small viruses and germs because it is very fine. It's also a good option if you have respiratory problems such as asthma or if you have elderly or infants in your home. The higher the MERV rating on a filter, the less dust particles and other contaminants can pass through it. A MERV 5 filter will trap up to 34%, a MERV 6 will stop 35-49%, a MERV 7 will prevent up to 69%, and a MERV 8 will trap up to 85% of particles.
In conclusion, if none of the variables mentioned above 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. However, if you have children or pets in your home or if any family members suffer from allergies or respiratory conditions, then a MERV 11 or 13 filter is recommended.