Standard throwaway filters are typically the least expensive air filtration option available to Bay Area homeowners. But these filters only provide a bare-minimum of protection for your HVAC system and the air you breathe. Although installing an air cleaner is the best option for improving your home’s air quality, some people aren’t ready for the more complicated installation that they require. So what’s a homeowner to do? The next-best option would be to install a pleated air filter.
What is a pleated filter?
A pleated filter is an air filter that uses a folding pattern with its media (hence the name “pleated” filter). By pleating the media, these filters can have an increased surface area and density while minimizing the reduction in airflow. In other words, pleated filters can collect more particles than standard throwaway filters without increasing your air conditioner’s energy consumption.
Most pleated filters can fit right into the slot where a normal throwaway filter would go. This often makes them the best filtration option available for people who don’t want to make alterations to their homes’ ductwork.
5 reasons pleated filters out-perform standard throwaway filters
- 1. Better at filtering your home’s air. A majority of throwaway filters only collect less than 20 percent of the largest particles in your home’s air. The best pleated filters, on the other hand, can collect more than 90 percent of the large particles in your home’s air and over 80 percent of the particles down to 1 micron in size, including legionella, lead dust and auto emission particles.
- 2. Minimum reduction in airflow. With throwaway filters, higher MERV ratings require more dense material that makes it harder for your air handler to push air through them. This causes your air conditioner to consume more energy to compensate. The folded design of pleated filters allows them to increase efficiency without sacrificing airflow.
- 3. Less maintenance. Throwaway filters typically need to be changed every 30 days, while the media in pleated filters can last between 60 and 90 days.
- 4. Better protection for your HVAC system. Because throwaway filters allow many of the particles in your air to pass through, your HVAC system is at much more of a risk for dust buildup and unwanted repairs. Pleated filters provide much better protection for your HVAC system, which helps avoid damage to your system and the potential for extra repairs.
If you have any questions about a pleated air filter, or if you’d like a cooling system serviced or installed in your home, contact Cabrillo, your Bay Area plumbing, heating and air conditioning company.