What Is MERV Rating and Why Is It Important?

What-is-the-MERV-Rating_GraphIn the world of dust collection, a large piece of the puzzle is the dust collector filters.

What are they made of; how much filter media is contained in each cartridge; how efficient will they be?

When comparing dust collector filters, you will come across Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) and see different MERV ratings.

But what is MERV rating and why is it important?


MERV is a rating of the overall effectiveness of dust collector filters. MERV filter ratings range from 1 to 16. The higher the MERV rating, the more efficient the filter will be in trapping airborne particles. Higher value MERV rating equates to finer filtration, meaning fewer dust particles and other airborne contaminants can pass through the filter. 

Using the right dust collector filter matters. MERV ratings help show how efficient a filter is. Filter efficiency is tested through six measured dust loads on particulate in the size range of .3 to 10 microns. Henceforth the higher the MERV rating, the more effective the filter is at trapping sub-micron particulate.

 It should also be noted that the ASHRAE 52.2 test procedure returns the minimum efficiency value for the tested filter. In actual use, once the filters have been coated with particulate, the filter efficiency would be much higher than that reported on the test.

Lower quality filters, in the 1-4 MERV range, are typically made of fiberglass. Most residential HVAC systems will use air filters with MERV ratings from 7-12. A higher MERV filter rating of 12-16 would be recommended for commercial buildings and industrial needs.


At A.C.T. Dust Collectors, our systems come standard with the high-efficiency Nano-Elite cartridge filters and carry a MERV 15 rating (one of the best in the industry), removing 99.9% of the particulate from the air stream. The cleaned air is then directed to the location of your choice, either returned to the facility or exhausted to the environment.

Our premium dust collector filters feature a MERV 15 efficiency rating for effective collection of extremely fine dust, smoke and fumes. We sell OEM filters that are consumable and will need to be replaced.

Interested in learning more about our OEM filters? Contact us or request a quote.




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