We participate in FPL’s Energy Savings Program. Ask us if you are eligible for a FPL rebate.

We participate in FPL’s Energy Savings Program. Ask us if you are eligible for a FPL rebate.

 

Charlie:

Welcome to Comfort on Porpoise, sponsored by Dolphin Cooling and Heating who have been providing 24/7 Comfort on Porpoise since 1998.

Lauren:

Hi, everyone, Lauren here from Dolphin Cooling and Heating. And I’m so excited, I have Tony with me here today. If you’re one of our customers and you’ve ever called in, you have a question about a bill or you’ve received a bill, this is the man behind all of that. Tony handles all of our accounting here at Dolphin. 

And actually prior to being with us, Tony has been in the filter business for several years. It was actually a family business that he was involved in. And here he is working with yet again, another family business. And Tony’s going to share with us today a little bit about filters, how they affect your air quality and the different types of filter options that are out there for people that maybe you’re just unaware of Tony, thanks for being here today. So can you share with us a little bit about filters and what options are out there for our listeners?

Tony:

After talking about the MERV AC pleated filters and eight, nine, and 10, which are the most popular because they’re allergen rated, there are higher ratings, they are harder on the system and they need to be changed more often. If somebody has a severe allergy problem or breathing problems, you want to use a MERV 11, which is going to cost a little more. It has a few more feet of material on it. So they’re rated to last up to 90 days. 

It’s the same situation as the other pleated filters. You just need to keep an eye on it and know how long they’re going to last in your system so they can be replaced properly. A lot of the times the filters need to be replaced in between regular maintenance. This is just to keep the airflow moving through the system so it works at peak efficiency. Generally the filters are less expensive than what it’s going to increase your electric bill.

Lauren:

Okay, good to know. So what I’m understanding is pretty much a MERV eight, nine, and 10, essentially, they’re pretty comparable, do the same thing, they have the same rating. And then once you get above that, say a MERV 11, a Merv 13, so on and so forth, then the filter itself actually traps more particles. Is that correct?

Tony:

Yes, more particles and smaller particles. The higher, the number of the smaller the particles. 

Lauren:

Okay, good to know. Cause I know that MERV reading confuses people a lot of times. And then there is a significant price difference between, say a MERV eight, nine, and 10 versus a MERV 11, 13, and as they continue to go up. And even if you get outside of say your standard one inch filter and you go into five inch filters or filter cabinets, is that correct as well?

Tony:

The five inch filters are generally designed to last up to six months. Sometimes you can get a year out of it, depending on the number of pleats in it. It’s again the same situation where you want to just check it every so often and get to know how often you need to change it in your home.

Lauren:

Okay. So good to know. So if someone went from say your standard one inch filter to a five inch filter, actually the filter itself will last longer versus a one inch that should probably be replaced every 90 days. So if you’re one of our customers and you’re on a maintenance plan with us, a semi-annual maintenance plan, we replace your filters for you twice a year. But the recommendation obviously is to check your filters in between that because you might need an additional filter change. So where the five inch versus a one inch, even though the five inch initially cost-wise is more expensive, but you don’t have to change them as frequently. Right?

Tony:

Correct.

Lauren:

Good to know. Now Tony, I know there are some other specialty filters out there as well. We’ve heard of things like charcoal filters. Can you explain a little bit the difference there between your other MERV rated filters?

Tony:

Okay. Most of the carbon filters or charcoal filters will capture odros and residue in the air, like from cleaning chemicals and things like that. You want to be careful with those because you want to get one with the MERV rating of at least eight. The most common ones are a seven, which is not Allergan rated, which is the reason why the eight and higher is recommended. It also is substantially more expensive most of the time.

Lauren:

So obviously they’re more expensive because you have that carbon or charcoal quality, which helps with any odors obviously, because your other regular MERV that aren’t carbon, they’re not necessarily going to be trapping odors. And then you also mentioned chemical residue, which I’m assuming the other MERV filters don’t capture as well. 

Tony:

That’s correct. 

Lauren:

Okay. So that kind of explains it’s doing a little bit more than your regular filter. So Tony, just typical, most people out there, what would you say is the average MERV rating that you see most people using? Is that, is it in that eight to nine to 10 range?

Tony:

Yes, that’s correct. There are lower ratings. Generally the lower ratings below eight will have less pleats per inch and some of them are designed to be changed once a month. So if you’re using one of those, be careful.

Also if you don’t need something like a MERV 11 or a MERV 13 because of allergy or breathing issues, you really don’t want to use the one month pleated filters because they’re substantially less expensive. We don’t use those. But they are available at the big box stores and some of the grocery stores.

Lauren:

Good to know. Well, Tony, thanks so much for sharing with us a little bit more about filters and hopefully our listeners learn something new. I know I did. The MERV rating has always been a little bit mysterious to me to some degree. So I really appreciate you taking the time to come on here and explain everything. Is there anything else that you want to share? You feel listeners should know when it comes to their filters?

Tony:

Just again, to reiterate, just check your filters every so often so you know when you need to change them.

Lauren:

Awesome. Well, you heard it straight from Tony, make sure to check your filters at home. They do play into the efficiency of how well the air conditioner inside your house is working. So make sure to check them out. And if you don’t know where your filters are, give us a call. We’d be happy to try and help you locate them in your home.

Charlie:

Thanks for listening to Comfort on Porpoise to learn more about our sponsor Dolphin Cooling and Heating visit www.dolphincooling.com or call 239-596-9044. That’s 239-596-9044.