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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    6

    Question about Filters vs. Whole House Air Cleaner

    I have severe allergies/asthma and my wife and I just moved into a new place a few months ago. A neighbor burns a wood fireplace often in the winter and the smell was coming into our home badly. I invested in a 3M Filtrete 1900 Ultimate Allergen Reduction filter to go onto the York furnace installed in our new home. The air filter has helped the problem a ton. On the worst nights (where it's foggy and smoke sits still outside) it still smells inside some, but not nearly as bad as before. I have a local contractor who I asked about reducing smoke smell and just allergies in general who recommended a whole house cleaner to be installed on the furnace.

    The recommended whole house cleaner is a York Affinity Media Filter (MERV 13). It costs $ to install. My question for you is: how much more effective at stopping smoke smells and reducing allergens would the whole house cleaner be vs. just keeping the 3M Filtrete 1900 filter that is now on the furnace? Trying to decide if it is worth my money to put the whole house cleaner on. If it will help allergies/asthma I'm willing to pay for it, just want to be sure it's a big upgrade. Thanks for your input in advance!

    Aaron
    Last edited by beenthere; 02-07-2013 at 06:08 PM. Reason: Price

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    67,928
    Seal your home better and it will greatly reduce the amount of smoke smell you get, probably help with your allergy suffering in general. Along with reducing your heating and cooling cost.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Savannah, Ga/H.H. Island, S.C.
    Posts
    1,460
    Prices are not allowed here.

    A 4" or 5" media has much more surface area than a 1" filter. More surface area equals better filtration with minimal air restrictions. If smoke is your issue - You may want to look into an actual electronic air cleaner, such as the Honeywell Trueclean or something equivalent.

    The 3M 1" that is currently installed is restricting your airflow and is affecting the whole systems efficiency.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Pavilion, NY
    Posts
    2,127
    Particulate and volatile organic compounds (vocs) are 2 different entities. Filters take out dust fairly well, hepa filters do it better. Purification units remove vocs. I would install a good quality media filter,, a ducted HEPA filter and An air purifier.
    ...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    6
    Never heard of ducted HEPA filters, thanks for the suggestion. Which of the filters would be primarily be helping the smoke smell and which would reduce pollens/dust the best?

    Quote Originally Posted by kangaroogod View Post
    Particulate and volatile organic compounds (vocs) are 2 different entities. Filters take out dust fairly well, hepa filters do it better. Purification units remove vocs. I would install a good quality media filter,, a ducted HEPA filter and An air purifier.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    6
    Sorry about putting the prices.. I'm new here and won't put any prices in the future. I've had different opinions on whether the 3M 1" filter would hurt the furnace in the long run or restrict air flow.. local HVAC guy told me the system is designed to handle it, but I could definitely see it being an issue. Probably a good idea for me to put in a whole house cleaner.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Ridley View Post
    Prices are not allowed here.

    A 4" or 5" media has much more surface area than a 1" filter. More surface area equals better filtration with minimal air restrictions. If smoke is your issue - You may want to look into an actual electronic air cleaner, such as the Honeywell Trueclean or something equivalent.

    The 3M 1" that is currently installed is restricting your airflow and is affecting the whole systems efficiency.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Pavilion, NY
    Posts
    2,127
    Filtration will do virtually nothing for smoke smell. Some electronic units will help but fall well short in my experience. Air purification units will reduce the smoke smell dramatically in my experience. As for pollen/dust,,,, a good quality media filter will help with the larger items and a ducted HEPA will supplement for the small.
    ...

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