The MERV 11 air filter is a great choice for those who need to take their air filtration to the next level without compromising on air flow. It is capable of removing an impressive amount of airborne materials, including harmful microscopic particles, making it ideal for commercial buildings and facilities for the elderly. However, it is important to note that using an air filter with a MERV rating that is too high can have a negative impact on air conditioning components, leading to reduced comfort, increased energy use, and accelerated wear and tear of air conditioning components. In general, ASHRAE recommends MERV models 13 and 14; however, it is best to select a filter with the highest possible MERV rating for your specific air conditioning system.
If you are trying to choose between a MERV 8 air filter and a MERV 11 air filter, here's what you need to know: raising only three MERV rating levels can be a smart decision to make the air cleaner or a harmful option for the entire air conditioning system, considering the air flow capabilities of the MERV 8 versus the MERV 11. Generally speaking, the highest MERV rating that is safe for residential use is MERV 13; however, such a high rating is rarely needed in a residential home unless someone has severe dust allergies or asthma and needs advanced air filtering. MERV 8 filters are known to be effective at filtering pollutants such as pollen, dust mites, sawdust, mold spores, and lint from the air. However, if you need to take your filtration to the next level without restricting airflow too much, then a MERV 11 filter is the way to go. It is important to note that using an air filter with a MERV rating that is too low may not effectively remove particulates from your home air. All of these considerations are important when selecting an air filter. If you install a higher filter than the one you were using - for example, if you switch from MERV 8 to MERV 11 - take care of your energy bills.
It may seem that they are almost the same, but the MERV 8 and MERV 11 air filters have some clear differences. This page will compare the MERV ratings 8, 11, and 13 and explain how to choose the right MERV rating for your home.