What Is a Media Air Filter? | Thiele

What Is a Media Air Filter?

What Is a Media Air Filter?

Do you know that most people spend as much as 90% of their time indoors? There is ample evidence that suggests spending time outdoors improves your health. Running into the great outdoors is a refreshing experience during pleasant spring and summer days. Fresh outdoor air blowing across your face and the warm sun are wonderfully enriching. During turbulent weather and when winter temperatures arrive, we spend far more time indoors. Your home provides comfort and refuge with ideal temperature and protection from outdoor elements, but indoor air also increases the risk of exposure to pollutants in the air.

Do You Ever Consider the Elements Inside Your home?

Indoor air quality can be far worse than outdoor air. There are a number of sources of pollutants within your home causing these issues. The team at Thiele Heating and Air Conditioning explores a few of these issues and how installing media air cleaners work to mitigate the risks to your family. The primary strategy is to reduce sources of pollution and improve ventilation by installing a media air cleaner.


Many homeowners understand that paint cans, gasoline, kerosene and other chemicals pollute the air within their living space. Eliminating these hazards lowers risks, but other pollutants are practically unavoidable. The emissions from cooking on stoves, household cleaning chemicals and construction materials linger within your home. A well-designed HVAC system helps air circulate efficiently, dispersing these pollutants. During spring and summer months, opening windows and doors also aids in moving air quickly. The design of your home, wind and other variables play a role in the air exchange between indoor and outdoor air through windows.

Known dangers including carbon monoxide and radon are often monitored with detectors, but you may often overlook common pollutants. Pets and hobby activities can fill your home with unseen pollutants, allergens, pet dander and other tiny invisible air particles.


Ventilation plays a major factor in improving indoor air quality. Weatherizing homes reduces the energy required to heat and cool your home. Exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens help ventilate your home, but many rooms are designed to be sealed. This means designing HVAC systems to circulate and exchange air at the ideal rate is vital to healthy indoor air quality. Conventional air filters help by trapping airborne debris before it enters your central air ducts. There are limitations to these air filters though.

Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV)

When you replace your air filter, have you ever wondered what MERV stands for? Are you more confused now that you know “minimum efficiency reporting value”? Let’s simplify the term: filters are measured by their ability to capture particles between 3.0-10.0 microns. A standard filter rated at MERV 10 captures 3.0-10.9 less than or equal to 80%. This means a lot of airborne particles pass through the air filter and enter your home’s air handler. Standard furnace filters are still very important, and they need to be replaced regularly. Clean air filters protect you and your family members, lower energy bills and protect your HVAC system from expensive repair bills.

The tiny particles that pass through standard filters can exacerbate respiratory issues. Even when you dust regularly, the smallest particles become airborne again which can be especially detrimental to the health of people with respiratory issues like asthma, allergies and cold/flu. During colder months, the issue can compound as indoor air circulates through your home’s return air ducts, passes through the furnace and returns to your living room and bedrooms.

How to Improve Indoor Air Quality?

Ideally, capturing as many particles as possible reduces the volume in the air you breathe. Installing a media air cleaner greatly improves the elimination of airborne contaminants. Popular models feature a MERV rating of 15 ,effectively removing 95% of particles. These devices are surprisingly compactly designed to fit into tight and restricted HVAC systems. They can be mounted into furnaces, onto furnaces or into return ducts. Technicians at Thiele consult with homeowners to identify the best model and location to mount your media air cleaner.

How Does a Media Air Filter Work?

Once installed, these systems last for many years and require very little maintenance. Beyond the much more effective media filter, air cleaners use electrically charged ions to control airborne dust, pollen, viruses, germs and other particles as air passes into the system. The pleated filter is oppositely charged so particles are attracted like a magnet pulling metal. Finally, the particles remain on the MERV 15 media filter. Air quality is improved and your family can enjoy the great indoors all year long.

How to Install a Media Air Cleaner

The proper air cleaner must be matched to your home, HVAC equipment and the design of your HVAC system. As a full-service HVAC company, our team is always eager to consult with homeowners on how best to improve indoor air quality. We offer air cleaners, air purifiers, humidifiers and dehumidifiers backed by our highly skilled and experienced team of professional technicians. We are always eager to hear from homeowners and provide help to our friends and neighbors. Contact our team to discover all of our indoor air quality products.