I’m sure you’ve been to The Home Depot or Lowe’s to pick up some air filters before. Aside from them not having the correct size you need, ever notice the different ratings with vague descriptions of what the filter can or can’t do? Well guess what? It’s all crap.
Unfortunately 3M (also the brand Filtrete) and The Home Depot have come up with their own “proprietary” ratings system. There is no third party testing, and what’s worse is that they won’t publish their own tests. They can use the rating system how they like, giving them the ability to sell you a lesser filter for more money. That’s like going to Ford to buy a truck and reading the sticker that says 52 MPG, as tested by Ford. Actually it’s worse, Ford would have to make up their own fuel efficiency rating system to look this bad.
MERV = Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. Regulated by standards set by ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers), every single furnace filter for sale in the US contains a MERV rating. This is the only nationally regulated, independent rating system for air filters. They also spend their own money to test them.
MERV ratings range from 1-16, and the rating is designed to measure the worst-case performance of a rated air filter on particles in the size range of .3 to 10 microns. (Note: As a point of reference, an average human hair has a diameter of 40-50 microns.) The rating works on three tiers, and the rating depicts what percentage of particles are removed in the 3.0-10.0 micron, 1.0-3.0 micron, and .3-1.0 micron range.
MPR = Microparticle Performance Rating. The MPR system of ratings was created by and is only used by 3M. Only filters under the 3M / Filtrete brand contain an MPR rating.
FPR = Filter Performance Rating. FPR is a proprietary system developed and used only by filters sold at The Home Depot. They made the switch from MERV several years ago.
I recommend a MERV10 pleated filter to every customer I do business with. It is a great baseline to start with on any air conditioning system. There are of course filtration systems that can do a better job, and cost more money. You have to trust an honest air conditioning company to help you decide what level you want to take your filtration.
Also, we now sell filters by the box (12) on our website here , shipping is included. New Ecommerce page is almost up and running. I will be adding new sizes as we go as well. One of the most convenient parts is going to be the ability to search by your air handler model number, if the filter is installed inside the air handler of course.
Thanks for your time, Michael Crothers, Owner, Pure Air Conditioning 239-597-7873