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Air Filtration – Can it Save You Money in the Long Run?

November 23rd, 2023

Last updated: June 25th, 2024

An air filter in a HVAC system is a device that removes particles from the air that passes through the system. The primary purpose of an air filter is to improve indoor air quality by trapping dust, dirt, pollen, mould spores, and other airborne particles. It also helps protect the HVAC system’s components, such as the blower fan and the heating or cooling coils, from getting coated with debris.

While we think of air filters primarily as being about air quality, the additional benefit of helping with the function of the air conditioner or HVAC system is well worth considering, and lifetime cost analyses may show that it can save you money to implement a filter.

The efficiency of an air filter is often measured by its MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) rating. Higher MERV ratings indicate better filtration capabilities, capturing smaller particles.

Regularly changing or cleaning the air filter is essential for maintaining the efficiency of the HVAC system. A clogged or dirty filter can restrict airflow, reducing the system’s efficiency and potentially causing damage. The frequency of filter replacement depends on factors such as the type of filter, the level of pollutants in the air, and the usage patterns of the HVAC system. It’s a good practice to check and replace or clean the filter as recommended by the HVAC system manufacturer.

Cost of Installation

The cost of running a HVAC system or AHU is always going to be higher than the cost of buying it when you evaluate its lifetime cost.

Air filters can be an added cost, and while it is relatively affordable to install an air filter, the cost of installation may put some people off as it is still an added extra, and the filters need to be periodically replaced during air conditioning maintenance.

Saving You Money

Air filters make the whole system run more efficiently, and therefore vastly cut electricity usage. Over the pond in the US, the Department of Energy (DOE) has estimated that a clogged air filter causes the heating and cooling system is to use 15% more energy than when the air filter was new, showing the need for an optimised and regularly replaced filter in an air conditioning system.

A recent study shared with us by a partner organisation showed an example of the savings in action.

Their study used the following filters:

Pre-filter panel filter – 63,992 kWh/year
Anti-viral bag filter – 100,264 kWh/year

They calculated an energy saving of almost 8% on the units in question just by having efficient filters in place. On top of that, a reduction in energy usage will provide an immediate potential reduction in the associated carbon footprint of approximately 9%.

Carbon footprint is something that all businesses should be aware of and doing their best to tackle and reduce.

How does this actually work in terms of savings? A clean air filter allows for better airflow through the HVAC system. When the system doesn’t have to work as hard to push air through a clogged filter, it operates more efficiently. Improved airflow reduces the workload on the blower fan and helps the system reach and maintain the desired temperature more easily, resulting in energy savings.

A Long-Term Benefit of Fewer Repairs

Dirty air filters can contribute to system malfunctions and breakdowns. Regularly changing or cleaning the filter is a simple and cost-effective preventive measure that can help avoid more significant air conditioning repairs in the future. Expanding the lifespan of your air conditioning unit is one of the ways that you can potentially save money over a lifetime of use.

An air conditioning system is a considerable investment for most businesses, and it is worth thinking about the ways in which they can save money in the long run, without cutting corners.

As part of a planned preventative maintenance schedule, businesses can potentially install an air filtration system and have the filters changed without even having to think too much about it.

In summary, commercial air conditioning is an important investment for UK commercial properties, providing benefits for employees, customers, and businesses.

Working across Yorkshire, we cover North YorkshireWest YorkshireEast Yorkshire and South Yorkshire and offer a fast, efficient response time to all commercial air conditioning breakdowns and repairs, as well as planned preventative maintenance schedules.

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