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Your HVAC system’s air filter traps dust, dirt, pollen, pet dander, and other contaminants. This keeps the indoor air quality in your home high and prevents breakdowns by keeping pollutants away from your system. Dirty air filters can restrict your airflow and waste energy. You should change a disposable air filter or clean a washable or electrostatic filter at least every three months. Most people use disposable instead of washable air filters because washable filters are more expensive, they’re less effective, and they get moldy easily.


Washable filters are not only more expensive than disposable ones, but they have to be replaced eventually, as with disposable ones. You’ll also need to clean a washable filter by taking it apart and rinsing off the components. This takes longer than just changing a disposable one, so you should avoid using washable filters if you have lots of things to do. In addition, you’ll need a spare washable filter if you want to use your HVAC system while you’re cleaning your main one.  

MERV Ratings

Washable air filters have lower MERV, or Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, ratings than disposable filters, so they’re not as effective. This means they can’t trap small particles such as bacteria, viruses, or pet dander. Disposable air filters can catch more contaminants and keep you and your family healthier and more comfortable, especially if you have asthma or allergies.


If you don’t clean a washable air filter regularly, it will become clogged, and contaminants could start growing on it quite easily. Contaminants also grows on washable filters when people clean and replace them without giving them enough time to dry. A moldy air filter will spread contaminants spores through your entire home.

Aqua Plumbing & Air is a Factory Authorized Carrier Dealer with more than 40 years of heating and cooling experience. We can help you choose the best air filter for your home and install, maintain, and repair a variety of HVAC equipment. Call us at (941) 306-3715 for expert service.

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