When it comes to residential HVAC systems, the best MERV rating according to ASHRAE is 13. However, before you upgrade your filter, make sure that your system can handle this classification. A higher MERV rating usually means lower airflow, which can make the system work harder and use more energy. For oven filters, our recommendation is to go for a MERV rating between 6 and 8, as this provides a great balance between maximum oven efficiency and home comfort. Generally speaking, filters with higher MERV ratings are more effective and improve air quality, but they are also more expensive. In addition, taller doesn't always mean better for homeowners.
MERV ratings greater than 16 are usually used in specialized commercial environments such as hospitals. In most cases, a MERV 11 air filter should be suitable for residential use. This should provide very efficient air purification without affecting airflow. On the other hand, air filters with a MERV 14 rating or higher are designed for commercial HVAC systems that can handle the coarsest filter material. If your family has health problems or allergies, then you may want to look for a high-efficiency filter with a MERV 11 rating or higher.
If you are concerned about outdoor air pollution, family members with respiratory problems, or pets in the house, then a higher MERV rating might be a good idea. You can use the comparison table below to better understand how filters rated with FPR and MPR compare to the more standard MERV rating system. Keep in mind that a MERV 11 air filter may need to be changed more frequently than a MERV 8 air filter. MERV ratings signify the effectiveness of an air filter in reducing particles and airborne contaminants. A filter with a MERV rating between 1 and 6 can remove particles between 0.3 and 10 microns with an efficiency of 20%.
They may seem to be almost the same, but MERV 8 air filters and MERV 11 air filters have some differences. A MERV score of 1 to 6 is the lowest range of MERV ratings, but that doesn't mean you should avoid filters with this rating. If your system can't handle the MERV ratings you need, there are other options available to improve indoor air quality. Remember that MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, which is a rating system designed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).