Good air filtration and air conditioning are crucial in homes and commercial spaces, but not just any air filter.
There are many different types of air filtration systems to consider, so it’s important to know what to look for. If you are unsure if you need a vent air filter or what kind of air filter you need for your space and want to understand which filters are most efficient, this article is for you.
WHAT ARE AIR VENT FILTERS?
Used in homes and commercial environments, an air vent filter fits into your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit. A vent air filter is used to remove airborne particles and pollutants that can be harmful to your health and the environment, preventing exposure to airborne contaminants like respiratory illnesses, skin conditions, allergies, and other illnesses, including:
- Dust and dust mites
- Viruses and bacteria
- Pet dander
Over time, these airborne contaminants can cause health issues like respiratory illnesses, skin conditions, allergies, and other illnesses.
HOW DO AIR VENT FILTERS WORK?
With many air filters on the market, most perform the same way; air passes through the filter screen, where contaminants like pollen, dust and dirt get trapped inside. Over time, contaminants and debris build up until, eventually, the filter becomes clogged and needs to be replaced.
Return air vent filters, filter out particles and impurities from the air in your home. As the air gets sucked into your return vent, the return vent filter blocks out dust and particles from entering the airstream to your HVAC unit.
Return air vent filters are sometimes preferred over using a filter in the HVAC unit for these reasons:
- Filters in return vents prevent dust from getting in your ductwork.
- Homes with multiple return vents can accommodate multiple filters—allowing for more airflow through your HVAC unit since filtration is dispersed over a larger surface area
SHOULD YOU USE A FILTER IN YOUR RETURN VENT?
If your air handler does not have a filter rack in the unit, then you need to use a return vent filter. If your air handler has a filter at the unit, then you do not need to use a return vent filter. If you already have an air filter in your HVAC unit, then you do not need an air return vent filter. You should only use an air filter in the HVAC unit OR the return vent, not both. Additional air filters will only decrease airflow within your home, creating airflow issues.
ADVANTAGES OF USING AN AIR RETURN VENT FILTER
There are plenty of advantages of return vent filters. Here are some of them:
- The first line of defense – Return vent filters work as the first guard—preventing impurities from circulating in the air in your home.
- Easy to switch out – Due to its location, it’s usually easier to change out a return vent filter than the filter at your air handler. For example, if your home’s air handler is in the attic, you won’t need to crawl up there every time you need to swap out an air filter.
Protection for ductwork – Return vent filters prevent particulates such as dust and hair from ever entering your HVAC ductwork. Notice dust building up in your ducts? The easiest way to get rid of this problem is to use a return vent filter.
- Promotes airflow circulation – If your home has multiple return vents, your air handler will have better airflow by using an air filter in each return vent versus a single filter at the air handler. This is because the filtration medium is spread out over a larger surface area, so your air handler will see less pressure drop and more airflow.
CAN YOU ADD AIR VENT FILTERS WITH ENVISIVENT PRODUCTS?
Yes! You can easily add air vent filters to any Envisivent Air Return vent. When purchasing an Envisvient Air Return vent, be sure to add the air filter clips to your purchase. You can find them there here. The Envisivent Air Filter Clips are made out of Galvanized Steel, and come in 1” or 2 “ deep brackets, depending on the thickness of the air filter you are planning on using, and in a bundle that includes 4 brackets and 2 straight clips. Our Air Filter Clips can accommodate a structured-style air filter as well as a loose-style air filter.
Simply attach the clips to the inner lip of the Air Return vent frame and slide your air filter into place behind the vent cover. Our air filter clips are designed to be used with Envisvent’s Removable Air Return Vents and they can also be used with any custom air return vent. To learn more about how it easily it easy to install an air vent filter on Envisvient products, be sure to watch this short video.
SHOULD YOU USE AN AIR VENT FILTER FOR THE SUPPLY VENT?
The quick answer is no you shouldn’t. Supply vents do not need – in fact, should not have – an air filter. Why? The filter belongs on the return side of your HVAC’s furnace and AC system. It’s a “must” to have one there. And if you have a return air filter of the right size that is properly installed, then there is no need for a supply vent filter. In fact, it will cause more problems than you might realize.
In conclusion, before purchasing an air filter for your air return vent, check to ensure that your air handler does not have an air filter rack in the unit and that you are looking to add a filter for your air return vent, not your air supply vent. Once you have positively identified your system can use and support an air filter, simply add the Envisivent air filter clips to any Envisivent Air Return vent and one easy step!