HEPA Filters Clear the Air, Along with Allergy-Ridden Sinuses

Posted On: February 02, 2014

If you suffer from asthma, airborne allergies or other respiratory conditions, you might be surprised to learn that relief from your symptoms can be attained without a lot of extra fuss or cost. Your home can be the refuge you’ve been searching for, and all you may need is a HEPA filtration system.

Understanding HEPA Filters

HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters are the most efficient air cleaning filters money can buy. They remove a wide variety of dust or other irritants from the air, from the smallest to the largest, leaving you free to breathe easy as you relax in comfort.

Why You Should Consider a HEPA Filter

Air filters are rated according to their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV), a metric for how well the filter removes the smallest particles. The MERV scale runs from 1-20, with top-end HEPA filters inhabiting the MERV 17-20 scale. Air filters in the mid-range of the MERV scale (8-12) also will do a good job of cleaning your indoor air, though HEPA filters are the gold standard when it comes to pristine indoor air quality. They can trap 99.97 percent of airborne particulates, including smoke, mold spores, bacteria, dust mites and pollen.

How Often Should They Be Changed? 

Change your HEPA filter as you would a normal air filter. These guidelines help:

  • If you have more than one pet, or have asthma or allergies, change your filter every 30 to 45 days.
  • If you have a pet, but you don’t have asthma or airborne allergies, change your filter every two months.
  • If you have no pets, and do not suffer from asthma or airborne allergies, change your filter every three months.

The catch with HEPA and other high-efficiency filters is that they do such a good job of capturing airborne particulates that they also will impede system airflow. They require system modifications to work with most residential forced-air systems, since the furnace blower or air handler must work harder to push the air through the filter media. They also will not fit into a standard air filter slot. Some HEPA filtration systems are designed as stand-alone air purifiers, not connected to your central HVAC system.

Contact the home comfort experts at Ernst Heating & Cooling to address your air quality needs. We serve Southwest Illinois, including Greenville, Bethalto and Alton.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hamel, Alton, Glen Carbon, Highland, Greenville, and Troy, Illinois and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about HEPA filters and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide. 

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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