When you shop for filters, you may notice that there is quite a wide selection to pick from. The problem is, which one should you choose? The electrostatic air filter has become quite a popular choice for a lot of consumers lately, but the question is, are these filters really worth the time and effort?
For those people that are unfamiliar with the electrostatic air filter, an electrostatic air filter is a filter that cleans the air by the use of static electricity. This static electricity occurs naturally and is 100% safe for your household. When air blows through the filter, it blows through a series of static prone fibers which creates an electrical charge. This static charge attracts particles as they fly through your unit. To remove these particles from your filter, you’ll need to wash it regularly.
What are the benefits of electrostatic filters?
There are quite a few health benefits associated with electrostatic filters. Some of the benefits include cleaner air, decreased dust, reduced pollen and other pollutants and no dangerous ozone emissions released into the air. In addition to these benefits, electrostatic filters also:
Come with lifetime warranties
Hold an extreme amount of dust and other particles
Feature an anti-microbial filter media
Minimizes the amount of housework you have to do
Never have to be replaced
Can be resized for a small fee
High filter capacity
Available in a wide array of options (electrostatic furnace filters, electrostatic air filters, etc.)
What are the negatives to electrostatic filters?
So, although there are several benefits of the electrostatic filter, there are also several downsides to these filters as well. First, electrostatic filters must be removed from your system and be cleaned thoroughly at least once every 4 to 6 weeks. This tends to become a hassle.
Second, electrostatic filters simply do not work as efficiently as most pleated filters.
Third, although electrostatic filters do help remove dust and other pollutants in the air, they’re not as effective at battling allergies as other filters on the market. If you sufferer from severe allergies, you may want to choose another kind of filter. Forth, they’re definitely much more expensive that other filters. However, it is a one-time purchase.
Now that you understand both the positives and negatives of electrostatic filters, it’s essential to compare and contrast them with the other filters on the market. By doing so, you’ll be able to choose the right filter for your needs.
Electrostatic air filter vs disposable
When it comes to disposal filters, you have your chose between a few options. You have disposable fiberglass filters, disposable pleated filters and disposable electrostatic filters. There are several benefits to using disposal filters over electrostatic air filters.
These disposable filters are made out of 1″-thick spun fiberglass and collect large pieces of dust, lint and other particles. They are also extremely cost-effective and are great for people who an apartment. On the bad side, they have no ability to clean the air, they do not help with asthma or allergies and they need to be replaced regularly. These filters will run you about $1 to $2.
This filter is crafted from polyester or cotton paper and has the ability to collect small particles like mites and spores from the air. They are usually more effective than electrostatic filters and are better suited for people with allergies. In addition to this, these disposable pleaded filters can be constructed of green products and are generally less expensive than electrostatic air filters but more than disposable fiberglass filters. As far as the cons, these filters have a tendency to decrease airflow within your system. As a result, your electricity bills can be more expensive each month while also putting strain on your system.
This filter is made with electrostatic cotton or paper fibers that self-charge and collect small particles of all kinds. On the positive side, these filters are available in most standard sizes and are not too expensive. They are also a good choice for homeowners who smoke, have children or have pets.
On the negative side, if you need a custom size, it’s going to cost you a little more. Another downside of the disposable electrostatic filter is the cost of purchasing these filters over a long period of time, especially custom sizes.
Electrostatic filters vs. paper filters
Filters made out of cotton paper or paper fibers also have their pros and cons. They don’t require any maintenance, they’re fairly inexpensive and like mentioned above, they’re usually constructed of recycled materials. On the other hand, electrostatic filters are better suited for households that have asthma or have severe problems with dust. In addition to this, electrostatic filters last a lifetime.
Electrostatic filters vs. high-efficiency pleated
Created from 4-5″ of pleated synthetic cotton, these filters are considered high-efficiency filters. In addition to this, these filters decrease fluttering and/or system leaking and are able to collect and filter out even the smallest particles. Do you suffer with autoimmune disorders or respiratory issues? These filters work well for people who deal with these problems.
The downside to these filters are the cost and the thickness of them. These filters need to be changed annually and cost around $100 to change. To add to this, because of the thickness of these filters, they can only be used in special-styled housing.
Cleaning your washable electrostatic air filter
Once you have compared and contrasted the different filters, and you have decided to go with the electrostatic air filter, you’ll then want to familiarize yourself on how to properly clean it. You should clean your filter every 4 to 6 weeks. To clean your filter:
- Remove the outside cover of your unit and remove the filter. If you are unsure how to do this, reference the user’s manual.
- Take the filter and flush it. However, you want to make sure you flush the water in the opposite direction of the airflow arrows. These arrows are usually labeled on the filter itself.
- Rinse the other side of the filter with water.
- Let your filter dry for a couple of hours.
- When your filter is dry, reinstall it.
By cleaning your filter regularly, you can ensure it lasts a really long time while also guaranteeing that your system runs smoothly, and the air in your home is clean and breathable.
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