How to Choose a Furnace Filter

Apr 7, 2022 | Uncategorized

We all love when our heater is working right and keeping us warm in the colder months. The furnace filter is an important component of the unit that helps the system work efficiently and gives us clean air to breathe. This is why choosing the correct filter to replace each time is an important skill to learn.

With so many types out there with different price ranges, it can be a confusing process that leaves you standing in the store aisle for longer than you intended. We’re here to walk you through the factors to consider so you go home with the right filter for you.


Size is a key factor in determining the filter you buy. If it’s too large it won’t fit in the furnace and if it is too small, it will let unfiltered air pass through the system potentially clogging up the unit and causing problems further down the road. Check the furnace manual for the correct size or, better yet just take a look at the existing filter and snap a picture or take it with you to the store. Most filters fall within a certain size, but it is always better to be sure so that your filter fits snuggly.


Most filters these days are disposable which means you’ll be switching them out every few months. There are a variety of options out there which means there will be one that best fits your home’s needs. Those with pets, smokers, or even members with severe allergies will want to look for a filter that has higher-quality filters. These are capable of filtering out pet dander, pollen, and even viruses depending on the filter.

You are also able to choose between pleated filters and non-pleated filters. A pleated filter design has more surface area which means it can capture more contaminants while also being replaced less frequently.

MERV Ratings

A filter’s efficiency is rated using the MERV system. This measures how well a filter is able to filter out particles, how efficient the air flow is, and how long the filter should last. The scale ranges from 1 to 16 with higher values being equal to more contaminants removed. Most residential homes use filters with a MERV value somewhere between 1 and 12. Higher rated filters are usually for commercial locations like in labs or hospitals.

Replacing Your Filter

You should plan on regularly replacing your filter. Every three months is a good place to start however this can vary depending on the time of year and the filter. Thicker filters can collect more dust and therefore don’t need to be changed as often. Other factors include the area where you live or pet presence. If your home is located somewhere more polluted, or if you have multiple animals living at home, it is smart to change out the filter more frequently.

Omega Heating and Air is the leading air conditioning, heating, and HVAC company in Roswell, Georgia. Contact us for your needs by calling (404) 438-0353 or get in touch for other HVAC services using our contact form.