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  • Writer's pictureJeremy Moreau

Choosing the Right Filter for Your Air Conditioner: A 101 Guide

Updated: Jun 12

How to choose the right HVAC filter for your home - Moreau's Heating and AC Repair - Lake Charles LA

How to Choose the Right Filter for Your AC in Lake Charles, LA.

As the warmer months approach in Lake Charles, LA, ensuring your air conditioning system is in top shape becomes a priority. An essential component of this preparation is selecting the right air filter for your AC. The right filter not only keeps your air clean but also ensures your system runs efficiently. At Moreau's Heating and AC, we understand the importance of making informed decisions about your home’s air quality and system performance. Let's dive into the basics of choosing the perfect air conditioner filter for your home.


Understanding MERV Ratings

The first step in choosing an air filter is understanding MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) ratings. MERV ratings, ranging from 1 to 20, measure a filter's ability to capture larger particles between 0.3 and 10 microns. For residential homes, filters with MERV ratings between 8 and 13 are often recommended, striking a balance between air quality and system performance.


Types of Air Filters

Fiberglass Filters: These are the most economical option, with lower MERV ratings, capturing larger particles like lint and dust. Ideal for those on a tight budget but should be replaced frequently.


Pleated Filters: Made from higher-quality materials, these filters have higher MERV ratings and can capture smaller particles, such as mold spores and pet dander. They offer better air quality improvement and are a great middle-ground option.


HEPA Filters: High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters have the highest MERV ratings and can capture particles as small as 0.3 microns. These are excellent for households with allergy sufferers or those desiring the highest air quality.


Washable Filters: While eco-friendly and cost-effective over time, washable filters generally have lower MERV ratings and may not capture as many particles as disposable options. They require regular cleaning to maintain efficiency.


Considerations for Your Home

When choosing a filter, consider your household's specific needs:


Allergies or Asthma: Higher MERV-rated filters are better for removing allergens and irritants from the air.

Pets: Look for filters designed to capture pet dander and hair, typically pleated filters with higher MERV ratings.

Budget: If cost is a concern, fiberglass filters are the most economical choice, but remember they might need more frequent replacements.

Air Filter Installation and Maintenance

Proper installation and regular maintenance of your air filter are key to ensuring air quality and system efficiency. Check your AC unit's manual for filter size and installation guidelines. Regularly check your filter (at least every 90 days) and replace it when necessary, especially during high-usage months.


Choosing the right air filter for your air conditioner is crucial for maintaining a comfortable, healthy home environment and ensuring your system runs efficiently. At Moreau's Heating and AC in Lake Charles, LA, we're here to help you make the best choice for your home and provide professional advice tailored to your needs.


For more guidance on selecting the right air filter or any other HVAC maintenance concerns, contact Moreau's Heating and AC Repair in Lake Charles, LA. Let us help you keep your home comfortable all year round!


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