MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, and it is the primary rating system used to measure air filtration. A MERV 11 filter is a type of pleated filter made with synthetic media that is more efficient than a MERV 8 filter. It can capture finer particles and remove more pollutants from the air, making it ideal for homes with pets or smokers. A MERV 11 filter has a higher efficiency rating than a MERV 8 filter, meaning it can capture between 65% and 79% of the smallest particles.
This includes pet dander, smoke, smog, and air from coughs and sneezes. Although these filters are slightly more expensive, they can improve indoor air quality to help relieve people with respiratory problems. When selecting a filter with a MERV rating, it is important to keep in mind that the rating indicates its minimum capacity. A filter with a lower MERV rating could trap fewer particles and contaminants compared to one with a higher rating.
However, selecting a filter with a MERV rating that is too high for your HVAC system can actually reduce the quality of the air you breathe. The same applies to homes with smokers or pets, as MERV 11 air filters better eliminate odors. Based on the characteristics mentioned above, a MERV 8 is considered superior filtration compared to air filters with a lower MERV rating. Overall, MERV 11 filters are an excellent choice for residential air filtration.
They provide highly effective filtration for a much healthier breathing environment without a significant price increase compared to MERV 8 filters.