Which Air Filter is Better: Pleated or Non-Pleated?

When it comes to air filters, there are two main types: pleated and non-pleated. Pleated air filters are made up of different sizes and can capture pathogens as small as 0.3 microns, filtering out even the smallest bacteria. In general, they are more effective at trapping very tiny particles than non-pleated air filters; 99 or 97% of the particles in the air can be caught in a pleated air filter. These filters provide more protection and filtration compared to standard filters, and come in a wide range of sizes that will fit your climate system.

Non-pleated air filters, also known as crease-free filters, are much more common and are considered traditional for residential homes. They offer standard protection and are less expensive than pleated air filters. Some of the benefits you can get from using these filters include optimal performance of your HVAC unit and efficient airflow to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. The 1-inch pleated air filter panel is composed of certain folds or pleats that help increase the surface area of the filter.

Air filters are an important component of an air conditioner and are responsible for cleaning the air inside the house. That's why you should replace non-pleated air filters monthly, depending on the HVAC model and filter. Fiberglass, electronic and electrostatic air conditioning filters are also considered non-pleated. When deciding which type of filter is best for you, consider the environment you live in.

If there are smaller particles making their way through the air, then you should opt for pleated air filters. If you're looking for an air filter option that's more pocket-friendly, but still does its job, choose crease-free. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that pleated filters are much more efficient than non-pleated filters at capturing microscopic particles suspended in the air. Most manufacturers recommend buying non-pleated air filters because they offer very good filtration and good air flow, which is important for air conditioner performance and efficiency.

Although pleated air filters are definitely better than non-pleated air filters, there are other factors you should consider before buying a filter for your air conditioner.