Any experience with Nordic Pure air filters?
They have MERV 12 filters of various thicknesses and sizes fairly cheap, with low pressure drops, but I never heard of them until recently. I can't find any opinions or reviews about them using Google (except one, someone complaining about their order getting crushed during shipping). Has anyone used them? If possible I'd like to find out about defects, weaknesses or concerns before I buy a case...
Compare with MERV 11 filters from other suppliers. Same media. Same construction.
Hmm. It wouldn't be the first time MERV ratings were overstated by a manufacturer (3M Filtrete, etc...). It is surprising that MERV claims aren't regulated, requiring certification (like the UL 900 ASHRAE 52.2 certification) with enforcement mechanisms (such as fines for making MERV performance claims without 3rd party certification). I think I'm going to start specifically asking for a UL-900 certification before I buy anything. I asked Nordic, we'll see what their answer is...
Originally Posted by breathe easy
Thanks Breathe Easy!
they *are* certified MERV 12
I received this information from Nordic Pure:
"Test was performed on an assembled filter. The test aerosol was KCL neutralized. " and then named the certification lab.
That sounds legit to me -- I won't go as far as calling the certification lab.
I may order a few to toy with and use them during winter, when allergy season is over (I'm sticking to MERV 13s during summer), as they are a good deal.
I guess I am always the skeptic. Just because the test was done by a certified lab does not mean you are comparing apples to apples.
For example a MERV number should always be accompanied by the air speed at which the filter was tested. I don't see this on their information. I do see a test speed for resistance which is 300 fpm. Other filter manufacturers test at 500 fpm. Generally, the slower the air speed, the higher the efficiency for pleated filters. Hmm!
You mentioned 3M. Actually, their test results are now reliable. They started off in the filter business playing the same types of games mentioned above. Their early Filtrete entries had MERV 12 and MERV 13 numbers and then the air speed in meters per second in very small print. I think the higher ups at 3M saw what was going on and put a stop to it. For several years they had good numbers with consistent air speeds in feet per minute. Now they have actually developed their own system with their own numbers 1050, 1200, 1400 - whatever that means.
thanks for pointing out the fpm effect.
As for 3M, I was referring to their expensive MERV "12" (purple packaging), which a few years ago was downgraded to MERV 11 (oups! I'm not sure that was entirely voluntary. My bet is that some people did measurements and complained). That made me mad, I felt cheated as I had bought a few based on that claim. I still can't believe that their grade just below (the red packaging) is rated MERV 11 as well, because when I looked closely at it I found big gaps (holes) in the media through which sand could get through.
Nowadays, if you go to Lowes stores, the 3M Filtrete "advanced filtration" are rated 1700 (as you say, whatever that means). Everywhere else, the 3M Filtrete "advanced filtration" (same packaging except the number claimed) are rated 1500. What's up with that?
I personally use a MERV 16 by Lennox. I live in Southeast Texas and we almost always have allergy season. Very important to properly size returns though. You can get into trouble quickly. Also I only sell variable speed indoor equipment. Can be very forgiving with high end filtration.
We sell tons of 4" thick honeywell grille mount filters (MERV 8) to our customers. They come into the office and buy them, techs sell them off of their trucks. Filter life averages 6-9 months. I have had some go as long as 14 months. Very easy to sell to customer as everyone has too much to remember anyway.
However, anything is better than a Wal-Mart special!
Does Nordic Pure have a QA problem?
I recently bought a 6-pack of Nordic Pure filters on Amazon, and I won't make that mistake again.
Each filter clogged in only three weeks. Each became completely bowed-in as the fan attempted to suck air through the clogged filter. Thinking it was just a fluke at first, I simply replaced one filter with another. About three weeks later the second one was clogged. This time the system froze up because of the lack of airflow. After thawing out and replacing the second filter, I decided I should call Nordic Pure to alert them. I thought they would be interested in knowing about this rather unusual problem and would want to take action.
To my surprise, the Nordic Pure rep simply blamed my AC system. He claimed no one else had reported a problem, so the trouble must be with my system. But the problem was a very simple and obvious one: their filters clogged in only a few weeks for no apparent reason. The only two causes would be excessively dirty air or defective filters. There had been nothing going on in my house which could account for suddenly getting clogged filters. The only difference was the filters. The intake vents were clean and I couldn't account for the problem other than to suspect the filters. The 3M ones I had been using had each lasted about three months. Even so, they never clogged the way the Nordic Pure did. There was almost no air passing through the Nordic Pure filters after less than three weeks of use.
What upset me the most was the Nordic Pure rep's cavalier attitude about my problem. They neither offered to refund my money nor replace my filters. They didn't want my old ones for analysis; they simply wanted me to go away.
These filters are fairly restrictive to airflow. Obviously, they are not ok for your system.
I would recommend going with a standard pleated filter and chalk this up to experience. But you have accomplished something. It used to be that an unhappy customer would tell ten people about their experience. With the Internet you have probably told hundreds.
Are you suggesting these filters are known to be more restrictive than others, 3M for example? Nordic Pure claims the opposite. In fact, the rep told me all filters by all manufacturers are about the same, as they all get their materials from the same sources. His claims contradict what I've read on this site and others.
Originally Posted by breathe easy
My hope is that lots others will benefit from my experience. What I don't understand is why no one else seems to be reporting this issue.
I really don't know how the Nordic Pure filters compare with others without seeing their test results. I have not tested these filters myself. As far as the comparison with 3M filters it would depend on which ones you are talking about. Some of the 3M filters are probably more restrictive and some are less.
A few years ago I did some tests comparing different filter pressure drops and different rates of flow. These tests do not include Nordic Pure but several 3M filters were tested. They can be found at: http://www.texairfilters.com/news/te...essuredrop.htm
The curious thing about the Nordic Pure filters is how they claim the MERV 12. If in fact they are using the same media from the same manufacturers as everybody else, how do they get MERV 12 when everyone else gets MERV 11? They are either massaging the data or they are "test shopping." (Test shopping is where a manufacturer sends off multiple filters to multiple labs hoping for an aberation ie MERV 12 rather than MERV 11.) In either case, I have always looked at this claim of MERV 12 with skepticism.
Thanks for the info, BE. Very enlightening. I have used Filtrete filters up to 1500 with no obvious ill effects on airflow. Now I use their 1000, because my understanding is that's basically a MERV 11 filter. I've also used other brands from Home Depot or Lowes rated MERV 11 with no ill effects. I prefer the less expensive brands because I don't need nor want anything higher than MERV 11. But lately most stores in my area offer only 3M in the higher MERV ranges, leaving me little choice. That's why I tried the Nordic Pure from Amazon.
I took note of your comment about their MERV 12 rating. As with so many consumer products, average people tend to assume more is always better. To me, it's bad enough when a company caters to this misbelief. But outright deceipt tells me I need to find someone else to do business with. All things considered, that's how I now view Nordic Pure.
"Each became completely bowed-in as the fan attempted to suck air through the clogged filter." From your earlier post you make it clear that you had too much filter for your system. Obviously, you needed a much lower MERV rated filter. Maybe a flat, non-pleated, MERV 4 or 7? Also, if the filter is "clogged" by particulate, then it sounds like the filter worked very well! I work at NP and talk to customers all day long who think getting a higher MERV means getting a better filter. I always tell them that the higher MERV is only better IF it's recommended for your system. There is no deception on this. As for the the 3M "fpr" system...it's not the ASHRAE 52.2, industry standard "M.E.R.V." 3M came up with it as a marketing device and they will tell you that it is designed to measure filtration for particulate smaller than 1micron. At NP, our air filters are made in Tulsa, OK, and we are very proud of them. We are always available to supply Technical Data sheets or discuss our products. Most respectfully, AMG