Do Pleated Air Filters Restrict Air Flow?

Air filters are essential for Total External Static Pressure (TESP) in HVAC systems, as they reduce the amount of air flow. Most residential homes are designed with a minimum of 0.5 inches, so it is inevitable that air filters will restrict air flow to some extent. To determine the resistance of the filter, the MERV classification system is used. The higher the MERV rating, the stronger the filter will be.

Different pleated air filters are designed with different properties and results in mind, so it is important to find the right filter for your unit and overall system. It is recommended to change or clean the filter every 30 to 90 days, depending on the type of filter and amount of operation of the system. Low-efficiency air filters are generally used for older units that cannot handle filters with a higher MERV rating. It is important to note that all filters will restrict air flow to some extent, as air must move through the filter for the unit to remove particles from the atmosphere.

One-inch pleated filters should be changed at least every three months, and four-inch or more pleated filters should be changed approximately every six months. Problems caused by a clogged air filter are incorrectly attributed to the filter, not to the lack of change. When choosing an air filter, it is important to consider the MERV rating and find one that is suitable for your home and HVAC system. This will ensure that you reduce the amount of contaminants in the air as much as possible while avoiding airflow problems that impair efficiency and performance.

It is also important to remember to change or clean your filter according to its recommendations.