Minimum efficiency reporting value


Minimum efficiency reporting value

Minimum efficiency reporting value, commonly known as MERV rating is a measurement scale designed in 1987 by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) to rate the effectiveness of air filters. The scale "represents a quantum leap in the precision and accuracy of air-cleaner ratings"[1] and allows for improved health, reduced cost and energy efficiency in heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) design. For example, a HEPA filter is often impractical in central HVAC systems due to the large pressure drop the dense filter material causes. Experiments indicate that less obstructive, medium-efficiency filters of MERV 7 to 13 are almost as effective as true HEPA filters at removing allergens, with much lower associated system and operating costs.[2]

The scale is designed to represent the worst case performance of a filter when dealing with particles in the range of 0.3 to 10 micrometres. The MERV rating is from 1 to 16. Higher MERV ratings correspond to a greater percentage of particles captured on each pass, with a MERV 16 filter capturing more than 95% of particles over the full range.

Below is a table of example MERV ratings:

MERV Min. particle size Typical controlled contaminant [2] Typical Application [2]
17–20[3] < 0.3 μm Virus, carbon dust, sea salt, smoke Electronics & pharmaceutical manufacturing cleanroom
13–16 0.3–1.0 μm Bacteria, droplet nuclei (sneeze), cooking oil, most smoke and insecticide dust, most face powder, most paint pigments hospital & general surgery
9–12 1.0–3.0 μm Legionella, Humidifier dust, Lead dust, Milled flour, Auto emission particulates, Nebulizer droplets Superior residential, better commercial, hospital laboratories
5–8[4] 3.0–10.0 μm Mold, spores, dust mite debris, cat and dog dander, hair spray, fabric protector, dusting aids, pudding mix Better residential, general commercial, industrial workspaces
1–4 > 10.0 μm Pollen, dust mites, cockroach debris, sanding dust, spray paint dust, textile fibers, carpet fibers Residential window AC units


References

  1. ^ Wilkinson, Ron. "Air Filters: New Facilities, New Standard". http://www.foustco.com/_fileCabinet/ProductInstructions/HVACFilters/merv_explanation.pdf. Retrieved 2007-03-29. 
  2. ^ a b c "Residential Air Cleaners (2nd Edition): A Summary of Available Information". EPA. http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/residair.html. Retrieved 2011-05-24. 
  3. ^ MERV values of 17–20 are not part of the official standard test. These are sometimes compared to HEPA filters but the specifications are fundamentally different.
  4. ^ ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.2-2007 requires a filter of at least MERV 6 efficiency for residential applications in the US.

External links

http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/residair.html



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