Poor indoor air quality is one of the most significant risks to people’s health today. People are often startled to hear that the quality of air in their home is actually worse than outdoors, but this is unfortunately the case for many households. One way to combat poor indoor air quality is to find a good HVAC furnace air filter. Most people are interested in finding furnace filters for allergies because they are suffering allergy symptoms at home. Whether your allergies are caused from pollen, pet dander, dust or mold, purchasing the right furnace air filter can be a great investment.
Furnace Filters for Allergies
Furnace Filter for Pollen Allergies:
Filtrete Healthy Living Ultra Allergen (MPR 1500 = MERV 12-14)
Furnace Filter for Mold Spore Allergies:
Filtrete Micro Allergen Defense (MPR 1000 = MERV 10-11)
Furnace Filter for Dust & Dust Mite Allergies:
Filtrete Clean Living Basic Dust & Dust Mites (MPR 300 = MERV 6-7)
Furnace Filter for Pets & Pet Dander Allergies:
Filtrete Allergen Defense Odor Reduction (MPR 1200 = MERV 11-12)
Furnace Filter for Bacteria & Viruses:
Aerostar Pleated Air Filter (MERV 13)
Table of Contents
- Furnace filters
- Filter Sizes
- MERV Rating
- MPR Rating
- What MERV rating should I buy for Allergies?
- Do Higher MERV filters restrict airflow?
- Recommended MERV Ratings for Pollen, Pet Dander, Dust and Mold
Furnace Filters for Pollen
Many people suffer from pollen allergies. Pollen is a powder that is very fine and is made from flowers, grasses, weeds and trees. When people breath in the pollen, many people have allergies that can cause them to suffer from things such as watery and itchy eyes, runny or stuffy noses, sneezing and coughing.
Filtrete Healthy Living Ultra Allergen
The Filtrete Healthy Living Ultra Allergen Filters are great to help to make your home allergen free and to help you to feel healthier and to have a cleaner and safer home. These filters are great to help to remove pollen and other allergens from your home. The Filtrete filters have a 3-month life span and they are made with pleats so that they can catch particles that are moving through the air.
The Filtrete Healthy Living filters are washable, and they are designed with a 3 in 1 technology that can help to catch unwanted allergens while helping to give the house clean air flow.
- MPR 1500 means that the higher the MPR or the microparticle performance rating, the better the filtering.
- The MPR 1500 equals the same as the MERV 12.
- Comes in 4-inch, 4 inch slim fit and 5 inch air filters.
- Considered to be allergy and asthma friendly.
- Captures microscopic particles.
- 3-month use.
- 1-inch pleated filters.
- Better than fiberglass.
- Lasts for 3 months.
- Gets rid of bacteria and viruses.
- Captures pollen, smoke and dust.
- Can last up to 12 months if using a thicker filter.
- Captures allergens from the air as it passes through.
- Can slow down the air flow if not changed.
- Dirty filters can cause a waste of energy.
- Has a lower MPR which means that it will not catch ultra-fine particles.
According to Amazon.com, the Filtrete Healthy Living Ultra Allergen has a 4.5 out of 5-star rating with over 1,546 customer reviews. Most purchasers felt that this product was easy to install and was worth the money that it cost.
Other customers felt that this product helped to reduce the allergens in their home, especially their pollen allergies. One customer talked about this product being a high-quality filter and that these filters helped to eliminate their allergies and helped to keep them safe from allergy symptoms.
Furnace Filters For Mold Spores
Mold spores are very dangerous allergens that can cause severe health problems in people that suffer from allergies. Mold spores are allergens that are often times not seen but that can fly through the air and then can grow on different surfaces.
Mold spores can cause different allergic reactions such as itchy and red eyes, itchy and runny noses, coughing, wheezing, asthma attacks and can cause other upper respiratory infections.
It is important to remove all mold spores from your home or office so that you and your family have a safe and allergy free environment.
Filtrete Micro Allergen Defense
The Filtrete Micro Allergen Defense filter can help to fight against mold spore allergens and other allergens in your home or office. This filter system can help to keep the air in your home clean and fresh and allergen free.
The Filtrete Allergen Defense filter can not only remove small particles, but it can also help to filter our larger particles that cause allergies or other sicknesses.
This filter helps to remove and reduce particles that are both microscopic and larger and helps to keep the air in your home or office clean and safe.
- Uses 3 in 1 technology.
- Traps unwanted particles.
- Has a MPR of 1000.
- Comes in 4 inches, 4 inch slim and 5 inch filters.
- Lasts for 90 days before needing changed.
- Removes mold spores.
- Removes dander and other allergens.
- Comes in different sizes.
- Needs to be changed only every 90 days or up to 12 months for thicker filters.
- Comes in different size MPR such as 1000 and 1200.
- 1000 MPR equals MERV 11.
- Captures bacteria and viruses from the air.
- Keeps the air clean and healthy.
- Only comes in MPR of 1000 and 1200 which means it will not capture super micro particles.
- A dirty filter can ruin your cooling and heating system.
- A dirty filter will waste energy.
The Filtrete Micro Allergen Defense filters have a 4.5 out of 5-star rating with over 2,818 customer reviews. Most customers found that these filters are easy to install and that they work great with their system to give great airflow and to collect unwanted allergens.
Some customers felt that this filter lasted even longer than the 90 days and that the filters were high quality and helped to control the air quality of their homes. One customer said that they had used these air filters for years and that these are the best air filters on the market.
Furnace Filters for Dust and Dust Mites
Dust mites live off of the dead skin of humans and animals, so they are found almost anywhere in our homes and offices. Dust mites can cause allergens and those that are sensitive to allergies can experience different symptoms such as runny noses, stuffy noses, red and itchy eyes, itchy skin, coughing, upper respiratory problems and even flu like symptoms.
In order to lessen the effects of dust mite allergens, it is important to find the perfect filter for your furnace to help keep the air dust mite free.
Filtrete Clean Living Basic Dust & Mites
The Filtrete Clean Living Basic Dust & Mites filter is a great filter to help eliminate your home from allergens that are caused by dust and dust mites. This filter helps to capture unwanted materials such as dust and waste that is left form dust mites. These particles can circulate through the filter and help to keep your home healthy and fresh.
The Filtrete Clean Living Basic Dust & Mites filter helps to rid your home of both microscopic and larger allergens that keep your allergies aggravated. This filter helps to clean the air from the floor to the ceiling and all of the air in between.
- Eliminates and reduces allergens caused by dust.
- Reduces and eliminates allergens caused by dust mites.
- Made of washable material.
- Made with 1-inch pleated material.
- Has a 3 in 1 technology that traps particles from the air.
- Has a 300 MPR which is the same as the MERV 5.
- Lasts for up to 90 days.
- Lasts for up to 90 days.
- Comes in a 6 pack.
- Uses electrostatic to catch more particles.
- Cleans and cycles the air through the filter to get the air cleaner.
- Works from top to bottom.
- Eliminated dust and dust mite waste from the air.
- Reduces allergies to dust and dust mites.
- Does not come in different sizes.
- Has a low MPR which means that it does not catch super micro particles.
- A dirty filter can cause damage to your heating and cooling unit.
According to Amazon.com, the Filtrete Clean Living Basic Dust & Mite has a 4.1 out of 5-star review with 620 customer reviews. Some of the customers liked that this filter used the electrostatic and that it was washable. Other people felt that the product was good and that it had a strong cardboard support.
A couple of customers did give poor reviews, feeling that this product is not strong and does not stand up to their furnace and that the filters are too flimsy to really work well.
Furnace Filters for Pets and Pet Dander
Many people experience allergies when they have pets, mostly due to the pet dander that comes off of the pets. These allergies can be severe in some people and can cause those that suffer from asthma to have more frequent attacks.
Allergies from pets can collect on all surfaces of the home and they can be found all over the home or office if an animal is present.
Some people that have allergies to pets and pet dander can experience symptoms such as stuffy noses, itchy eyes, swollen membranes, wheezing, coughing and even shortness of breath. It is important that if you experience allergies from pets or pet dander that you find a filter that can help to eliminate these allergens in your home or office.
Filtrete Allergen Defense Odor Reduction
The Filtrete Allergen Defense Odor Reduction filter can help to keep your air clean and fresh by helping to get rid of particles of pet dander and other particles that can cause you to have allergic reactions.
The Filtrete Allergen Defense Odor Reduction filter uses a 3M carbon technology that can help to reduce odors and uses electrostatic so that it can catch allergens as they pass through the filter.
When allergens pass through the filter, they are trapped by carbon and this helps to reduce both allergens and odors that are found in the home.
- Captures allergens caused by pet dander and other particles.
- Uses 3M carbon web technology.
- Uses electrostatic.
- Removes odors.
- Uses 3 in 1 technology to trap unwanted particles from the air.
- Has a 1200 MPR rating which equals the MERV 11.
- Removes odors form the air.
- Removes pet odors.
- Removes pet dander allergens.
- Uses 3M carbon technology.
- Captures odors and gases in the carbon.
- Reduces smoke and chemical odors.
- Uses 3 in 1 technology
- More effective than organic vapor filters.
- Removes more than 65 times the odors of other brands.
- Starts working in minutes.
- Is not made to remove bacteria or viruses.
- Does not come in different thicknesses.
According to Amazon.com, this filter has a 4.2 out of 5-star review with 855 customer reviews. This filter has over 75% of the people giving it a 4 or higher star review. Many customers commented on the fact that this filter helped to remove pet odors and others talked about how they were able to keep their pets even when their children were allergic to them because of this filter.
A few customers felt that the product was flimsy, that the carbon dust was loose and not useful and that the filters did not hold up to its name
Furnace Filters for Bacteria and Viruses
Bacteria and viruses can travel through the air and it can cause people to become sick. Many people experience colds, the flue and other infections due to bacteria and viruses that they come in contact with.
People that are exposed to bacteria and viruses in the air can experience coughing, sneezing, runny and stuffy noses, red and itchy eyes, and asthma symptoms, to name a few.
It is important to have an air filter that can help to eliminate or reduce the bacteria and viruses that circulate through our air to help keep us healthy and strong.
Aerostar Pleated Air Filter
The Aerostar Pleated Air Filter is made of disposable fiberglass and uses 100% synthetic media to help capture particles from the air such as viruses and bacteria.
This product captures unwanted allergens and helps to eliminate viruses, bacteria, dust, dirt, pet dander and more to give better air quality and to give people safe air.
The Aerostar Pleated Air filter is known to help reduce asthma attacks and to reduce allergies and symptoms.
- Comes in normal sizes 16x25x1.
- Reduces allergies from viruses and bacteria.
- Fights against dust mites.
- Reduces allergens from mold spores and pollen.
- Decreases pet dander and dust.
- Uses innovative technology.
- Comes in MERV 8, MERV 11, and MERV 13.
- Has a high MPR level which means it helps to get rid of microscopic allergens.
- Removes bacteria and viruses from the air.
- Reduces allergies.
- Reduces asthma attacks.
- Safe for the environment.
- Safe for pets.
- Keeps air clean and fresh.
- Captures 3-10 size microns.
- Better than disposable filters.
- Lasts 60-90 days.
- Manufactured in the USA.
- Can be used for residential or commercial buildings.
- Has a FPR 5.
- Fights against lint.
- Needs to be changed in 30 days during the summer and winter months.
- Uses fiberglass.
- Has a MPR of 600 when using the MERV 8.
- The lower MERV filters do not capture mold, pollen, dander or dust.
According to Amazon.com, the Aerostar Pleated Air Filter has a 4.3 out of 5-star rating with 2,351 customer reviews. Most customers loved the fact that these filters are easy to use, and they feel that these filters are worth the cost.
Some customers felt that this product was better than the 3M filters because of cost and effectiveness. Others felt that these filters were high quality and that they were cheap enough that they can be changed even monthly without feeling like they have wasted money.
A few customers felt that the size was listed wrong and that the filters are smaller than they should be.
It is important to measure the parameters of your filter cabinet before purchasing a new filter. The best way to determine the size of your filter cabinet is to measure it with a tape measure.
Here are the steps to measuring your air filter size:
- Measure the length of the air filter cabinet
- Measure the width of the air filter cabinet
- Measure the depth of the air filter cabinet
Now you have the three most important air filter dimensions!
Air filter dimensions in order: Length (L) x Width (W) x Depth (D)
You will usually find an air filter that will fit your cabinet size. Air filter lengths generally range from 10″- 20″, air filter widths generally range from 20″-25″, and depth usually ranges from 1″-4″.
MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. MERV ratings are regulated by the ASHRAE (the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air conditioning Engineers). The ASHRAE regulates all furnace filters for sale in the US and mandates that MERV rating be placed on each filter.
MERV ratings measure the worst possible performance of an air filter. These ratings range from 1-16 and are based on the ability to filter particles .3 to 10 microns in size. The rating is determined based on a set of three different percentages. The first percentage (level 3) is based on the ability to filter particles that are from 3-10 microns in size, the second percentage (level 2) is based on the ability to filter particles from 1-3 microns in size, and the last percentage (level 1) is based on the ability to filter particles from .3-1 microns.
Understanding MERV Ratings
The higher the MERV rating the better. MERV ratings range from 1-16. A good MERV rating ranges from 11-13, and a very good MERV rating ranges from 13-16.
MPR stands for Microparticle Performance Rating. The MPR rating is not used for every type of filter. The only brand of filters that use MPR ratings are 3M filters. They have developed their own performance ratings.
MPR Rating to MERV Rating Comparison Chart
- MERV 6 = MPR 300
- MERV 8 = MPR 600
- MERV 11 = MPR 1000-1200
- MERV 13 = MPR 1500-1900
Do furnace filters help allergies?
AC Furnace air filters with high MERV ratings help allergies by capturing micro particles such as pollen, dust, mold spores, and pet dander. A filter with a MERV rating of 9-12 and higher will effectively reduce allergens because it is able to capture up to 95% of smaller particles.
What MERV rating should I buy for allergies?
The best MERV rating for to buy for allergies ranges from 9-13. A furnace filter with a MERV rating of this magnitude should capture 95% or more of micro particles that produce allergies. The particles that these filters are able to capture are pollen, dust, dust mites, mold spores, pet dander, and more.
Do higher MERV filters restrict airflow?
Higher MERV HVAC filters can restrict airflow and result in increased energy bills. It is important to weigh the benefits and downfalls of high MERV filters. A higher MERV means that it will effectively filter allergens and small particles, but may reduce airflow and result in a higher energy bill.
Recommended MERV Rating for Pollen, Pet Dander, Dust and Mold
The recommended MERV rating for pollen is 9-12. A filter with a MERV rating in this range will eliminate 95% of particles that flow through the furnace filter. In theory, this means that allergy symptoms should significantly reduce in your home.
Recommended MERV ratings for Pollen, Pet Dander, Dust, and Mold Spores:
- Pollen: 9-13
- Pets & Pet dander: 7-11
- Dust & Dust Mites: 6-9
- Mold Spores: 7-11
If you experience any type of allergies or experience allergy symptoms, make sure to purchase a filter that fits your needs. If you have pets, mold spores, dust or dust mites, or seem to always be fighting pollen, bacteria or viruses, make sure that you purchase a filter that helps to eliminate these particles.
Choosing the perfect HVAC (AC) furnace filter can help to eliminate or reduce allergy symptoms and help you and your family to have a healthy and clean home.
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Frank is the chief editor and director at Specialty Air, where he oversees testing, research, and editing for all air quality-related articles. Frank is an expert in the air quality space with extensive experience testing, researching, and reviewing air purifiers, air conditioners, air filters, air fresheners, fans, and more. He also has over 4 years of experience with issues surrounding mold remediation, radon mitigation, moisture management, air duct systems, HVAC, and insulation.