Most know that air filters are there to help keep our heating and cooling systems running smoothly and efficiently.  The thing about air filters is that when they’re dirty, they can’t do their job. That goes for both Washable Air Filters and Disposable Air Filters. 


The purpose of an air filter is to filter out and help reduce particles such as dust, pet dander, pollen and to help your system not work overtime.  A quality air filter will do a great job when it’s clean.  Whether it’s disposable or washable, it can’t do its job if there is dust and debris is built up.    


MERV Ratings are something to consider.  Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV for short is a filter rating system to standardize and simplify filter efficiency ratings for the public.

Washable Air Filters typically have a MERV rating of 1 to 4.  They can get the job done and catch large particles like dust and soot.  Other particles from pets such as pet dander is too small to be caught in this type of filter.  Things such as viruses and tobacco smoke are not effectively removed either.

Disposable Air Filters are more effective in capturing small particles such as dust, allergens, lint, pet dander, smoke, bacteria, and viruses) plus more as the MERV Rating increases. Typically residential filter MERV ratings go as high as 16.

Washable Air Filters should be thoroughly cleaned monthly. Sounds simple enough, but in reality, most people do not follow through each month.  It’s on the “To Do List” but keeps getting pushed back again and again.  Secondly after thoroughly washing, the filter must be completely Dry.  If the filter is put back while still damp, it’s a welcome mat for bacteria and fungus to grow, which will circulate around your home.    

Disposable Air Filters are a bit simpler; with much less time and effort.  Remove the old filter and toss it, and place the new filter.  No cleaning or dry time included. 

Disposable Air filters have more Pro’s than Con’s.  They have higher MERV Ratings (especially helpful for people sensitive to smoke, have allergies or asthma) compared to Washable filters.  Plus it’s less “hassle” to replace to No cleaning and dry time. 

How Can DFE Help?

Direct Filter Express can make replacing your air filter even easier for you.  We offer quality air filters (custom sizes available too) that are delivered to your door; which acts as a reminder that it’s time to replace the filter.  No more trips to the big box stores, trying to remember you filter size and hunting for it. 

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Due to high demand, we are no longer accepting any new orders from outside the state of Idaho. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.