Pleated vs Non-Pleated Air Filters: Which is Better for Your Home?

When it comes to air filtration, pleated filters are the way to go. They have a higher MERV rating, which means they can trap smaller particles and provide cleaner air. Plus, they're not significantly more expensive than pleatless filters. However, they may not be the best choice for large spaces that require faster air passage.

On the other hand, pleatless filters are a great option for commercial environments, as they are more cost-effective and don't require frequent maintenance. When it comes to household air filters, there are two main types: fiberglass air filters and pleated air filters. Fiberglass filters are cheaper and easier to install, but they don't provide the same level of filtration as pleated filters. Pleated filters have a MERV rating of 5+, which means they can filter pollen, pet dander, bacteria, and some viruses.

This makes them a much better choice for anyone with allergies, asthma, or similar sensitivities. When it comes to efficiency, pleated air filters outperform their fiberglass counterparts in almost every category. They're much more efficient at trapping particles, they're safer for the air and the HVAC unit, and they don't require frequent maintenance. However, keep in mind that a higher MERV will require more energy for air to pass through due to the denser material. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) recommends using pleated filters over pleatless ones due to their higher efficiency at capturing microscopic particles suspended in the air. A pleated filter with only a MERV 8 rating can filter at least 75% of particles between 3 and 10 microns.

While some people may suggest using flat filters and changing them more often, this isn't always the best option as it can lead to lower MERV rates and attract mold to the air unit. When it comes to choosing an air filter for your home's HVAC system, it's important to select the right one for your needs. While a higher MERV rating may seem like a good idea in theory, it can cause problems such as reduced air flow and decreased lifespan of your equipment. In many cases, you won't need to buy or reinstall a new air filter for at least three to four months.