How to Find the Perfect Size Air Filter for Your System

Learn how to determine what size air filter your system requires for keeping your home's indoor air quality healthy and safe.

How to Find the Perfect Size Air Filter for Your System

In most cases, the dimensions of the air filter will be printed on the side of the filter. The actual size, as you may have guessed, is the actual dimensions of the filter in length, width, and thickness. This size is usually on the filter just below the nominal size and is usually indicated as the actual size. When you buy a filter online, the actual size appears at some point in the product vignette or in the product description.

If the filter doesn't have the actual dimensions on the outside of the filter, you can measure the filter to get the correct measurements. Some brands have a foam seal on the outside of the filter. In this case, make sure that you have a compatible actual size and that it also has foam to ensure a perfect fit. The dimensions listed on the sides of the air filter frames and those printed with the largest size on the air filter packaging are usually the nominal dimensions.

These measurements indicate the length, height, and depth (thickness) of the air filter, rounded to the nearest inch. An example of nominal dimensions would be 16 x 24 x 1.When it comes time to buy new air filters for your air conditioning system, there are a few things to consider. The most important is to figure out what size you need. This can be done by looking at your current filter or by consulting your equipment manual to determine the correct specifications. HVAC filters are usually located in a slot next to your boiler or air controller. However, some air conditioning systems have filters inside return air ducts scattered throughout several rooms in your house.

There are thousands of sizes of air filters, and manufacturers of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems make it difficult to find replacements. The Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) is a standard filter industry system that evaluates how effective an air filter is. As air circulates through a building's air conditioning system, air filters trap and collect large and small particles, such as dust, allergens, and microorganisms. Changing your boiler filter on time is much easier when you know what size air filter you need. Installing a smaller filter will allow unwanted contaminants to pass through and enter your home's air and air conditioning system.

This is an easy way to determine what size your air conditioner filter needs to be, but not all filters have their measurements listed on them. Air filters usually have a MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value) that determines what type and size of contaminants it will work against. MERV 17 to MERV 20 filters are often used in surgical operating rooms, clean rooms, and other contexts that require absolute cleanliness. When you buy an air filter, you'll see words like “nominal size” and “actual size” together. You can hear it: your HVAC technician is giving you lessons on how to change your air filter.

Building a custom air conditioning or heating filter allows you to choose specific dimensions if standard sizes aren't right for you. Pleated filters are usually better than non-pleated filters because they allow more surface area to accumulate dust, pet hair, and other debris that floats in the air. With more than 17 years of experience, RTF has a recognized position as a trusted retailer for top-tier brands in the indoor air filtration market. Knowing how to determine what size air filter your system requires is essential for keeping your home's indoor air quality healthy and safe. It's important to measure your current filter or consult your equipment manual before purchasing new ones so that you get exactly what you need for your system.

Ruben Eustace
Ruben Eustace

Infuriatingly humble beer trailblazer. Avid thinker. Amateur twitter practitioner. Unapologetic music expert. Amateur twitter advocate.

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