When you make your home in Florida, there’s one piece of household equipment that is more important than all the rest put together: the central air conditioning system. Keep that baby healthy and running, and all your other worries will melt away—if you’ll pardon the pun. One of the keys to a healthy AC system is regular filter maintenance – either replacing a disposable model or cleaning and reusing a washable filter.
The other important factor is the size of the filter. If you don’t use the exact dimensions your AC unit requires, unfiltered air will make it through your system and dirty the cooling coils, making the system run less efficiently.
Now that you understand the science, we’ve found several filters to make your life easier and keep your home cooler. Each filter is available in a large variety of dimensions, so be sure to verify that you’re ordering the right size for your air conditioner.
For Pet Owners
These electrostatically charged filters are designed to clean a home’s air from floor to ceiling, trapping lint, dust and mold spores along the way. We love that these need to be replaced only once every three months.
These filters have 12 pleats per foot, which makes it ideal for home and commercial use because they trap 90 percent of airborne particles. If you have a pet or allergy sufferers in the household, it’s recommended that you change the filter more often.
Tackles Micro Particles
This filter has the highest MERV rating of all the models we recommend. It’s built to outperform standard fiberglass filters and the washable types. Though it can go three months between replacements, it’s recommended to switch them out every two months for optimum efficiency.
Rinse and Reuse
You know, there’s no reason you have to toss your air filter every month—some filters are made to be washed and reused year after year. And washing is no real chore for these filters—just rinse it with a hose or wash it in the kitchen sink. You can use a mild dishwashing liquid if you accidentally went too long between cleanings.
This is the standard grade of filter that has been commonly used in central AC systems for more than 50 years. They work well on household dust and debris, and they perform best if they’re changed out every 30 days. The metal retainer and chipboard frame makes them more durable than competing bargain filters.