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Air Conditioner Filters: Advantages And Disadvantages

Nov 16, 2007
Air conditioner filters were originally designed to keep the air conditioner's elements clean, but have come with many other advantages and uses - mainly, keeping the air clean in the room, house or office (which is the number one reason why people buy these filters) but also to enhance the efficiency of the air conditioner.

There are many types of air filters available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Some can be re-used, while others need to be thrown away and replaced. The range of such filters starts with the most inexpensive but least efficient conventional fiberglass throwaway filters, and ends with electronic filters, with many types in between. Lets look at them in more detail :

1)Standard / conventional air filters
They have cardboard frames and are made out of spun fiberglass. They need to be changed every month (depending on air conditioner use) and can only remove and block about 10% of pollutants in the air. While they are inexpensive, they are not as efficient as other filters, and the regular replacement may cost you more in the end.

2)Pleated air filters
These cover a larger surface area than your conventional air filters above, being made from folded material. They can also remove a greater number of particles than the standard filter - that being 35-40% of pollutants in the air. Generally, these air filters only need to be replaced every three months.

3)Electrostatic air filters
These are more complicated, but can remove 90% of the pollutants in the air coming through the air conditioner. They work through a filter media with an electronic charge that actually attracts the pollutants. These filters can either have a built-in charge, or are charged from the air that is moving through the unit. They do, however, need to be replaced about every three months.

4)Electronic air filters
They function very similarly to the electrostatic air filters, but are especially great for people who suffer with allergies, as they are able to remove 95% of the contaminants in the air. This makes them the second most effective unit, although they can be quite pricey. The added benefit, however, is that many electronic units can be re-used and do not need to be replaced.

5)HEPA air filters
HEPA filter stands for "High Efficiency Particulate Arresting" filter and can trap contaminants that are the width of a human hair. HEPA filters are able to remove 99.97% of the contaminants in the air, meaning that it is highly efficient and ideal for people who suffer with allergies and who want the cleanest air.

6)Specialized air filters
They are made for specific purposes - such as removing or preventing odor in the air.

When choosing an air filter you need to see what suits your budget and needs, and also ensure that your air conditioner is properly designed to suit your air filter of choice.
About the Author
Alex Olson is a professional journatist who wrote a lot of highly popular articles on air conditioner filters , water filters, aquarium filters and much more.
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