A Guide to Choosing the Right AC Filter in Isle of Palms, SC

Using the right air filter is essential to keep your air conditioner running smoothly. The wrong filter can harm your cooling system and can even raise your energy bill. So, how do you select the best AC filter in Isle of Palms, SC? Keep reading to learn about the different features of an AC filter to help you make the right choice for your HVAC system.

Type of Filter

There are two types of AC filters: disposable and washable. The type of filter you need will depend on your specific needs and situation.

The most common type is a disposable filter. It’s a simple paper or foam filter that you must replace at least every three months. This type of filter effectively traps large particles but doesn’t remove smaller particles or odors from the air.

The washable filter is a more permanent solution. It’s made of metal or plastic, and you can wash and reuse it numerous times. Washable filters remove more small particles and odors from the air, and they require more maintenance than disposable filters.

Size of the Filter

Whatever type of AC filter you choose, make sure it’s the correct size for your cooling system. Using a filter that’s too small or too large can reduce the efficiency of your air conditioner and cause it to overwork. The size of the filter you select will depend on what the manufacturer recommends for your system.

If the filter is too small, it will not be able to do its job correctly. If the filter is too large, it will obstruct airflow and reduce the air conditioner’s efficiency.

MERV Rating

The minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) rating of an AC filter indicates how effective it is at trapping particles. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), filters with a higher MERV rating are better at trapping particles.

However, there are other factors to consider, such as what your furnace or air conditioner manufacturer recommends for the best performance. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), which devised the rating system, recommends MERV 13 filters for residential use. If these aren’t compatible with your system, choose the rated filter recommended by the manufacturer.

Frequency of Replacing the Filter

Most people are aware that they should change their AC filter, but they’re unsure how frequently they should do so. The frequency of change depends on the type of filter used and the climate you live in. Disposable filters need replacement every three months or when they become dirty.

Washable filters need washing every month or two. During Isle of Palms’ hot, humid summers, you may need to change your filter more frequently. Also, if you have pets or allergies, you may need to change your filter every month or so.


Another factor to consider when selecting an AC filter is the price. Disposable filters are the cheapest option, but you need to replace them frequently. Washable filters are more expensive, but they last longer.

Filter Life Expectancy

The life of an AC filter depends on the type of filter you use and the indoor air quality of your home. You need to replace disposable filters every three months or more frequently when they become dirty.

With all the factors to consider, selecting the right filter can be a challenge. If you need a new AC filter or have other questions about indoor air quality, contact our team at AC Heating and Air Conditioning Services. Our experienced AC technicians can help you pick the ideal filter so that you have peace of mind knowing that your air quality is the best it can be.

Image provided by iStock

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