Whole House Air Filters

Written by Rachel Arieff
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Whole house air filters are manufactured to work within forced-air heating, cooling, and ventilation systems. These filters are also sometimes referred to as "HVAC" filters. (HVAC is an acronym for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning.) These systems are grouped together because they all rely on the mechanical gathering, transfer, and expulsion of air. Thus they all fall under the title of "forced-air systems."

Forced-air systems are great because they enable us to manipulate air temperature and circulation in ways never before dreamed possible, treating the "whole house"-thus the name "whole house air filters." However, the down side to forced-air technology is that it stirs up a lot of particulate matter (dust, mold, pollen and the like) and mixes it into the air, which we then breathe in . . . and our bodies don't like it one bit!

The Role of Whole House Air Filters

How can we blame them? These particles are terribly irritating and are in fact classified as allergens. Certain people, such as those with asthma, are more sensitive to them than others, and suffer terribly when exposed to dirty, dusty indoor air. Yet this is an insidious problem because most of these particles are invisible to the naked eye, sometimes measuring as little as .3 microns . . . and I haven't even mentioned the chemical fumes!

Chemical fumes are made of even smaller bits of matter, and require highly sophisticated, activated carbon filters to stop their circulation within the home. Both types of whole house air filters-activated carbon filters to fight chemical pollution, and synthetic media filters to capture airborne allergens-are key to a healthy, whole house air situation.

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