If you’re looking to find out all there is to know about panel filters, then you’re in the right place.
In this blog post we’ll look at panel filters in detail and help answer the following common questions surrounding this type of air filter.
- What are panel filters?
- What impurities do panel filters remove?
- How do panel filters work?
- What are the advantages of panel filters?
- What is the difference between panel filters and pleated panel filters?
- When should you change your panel filters?
- How are panel filters rated?
- Are there quality standards for panel filters?
- How much do panel filters cost?
Let’s jump in and get started…
What are panel filters?
Panel filters are simply air filters that remove dust and particle impurities from the air and they clean particles ranging in size from 1 micron to 50 microns using a negative pressure system.
Panel filters also protect mechanical parts from damage caused by particle abrasion, as well as preventing particle contamination of the engine oil.
They assist lengthen the service life and improve the internal air quality of other units in commercial and residential buildings or factories when utilised in housing vents.
What impurities do panel filters remove?
As mentioned above, panel filters remove particles ranging in size from 1 micron to 50 microns. This means that they are able to help remove:
- Mold spores
- Pet fur
- Carpet and textile fibers
- Fabric protectors
- Lead dust
- Milled flour
- Exhaust particles from automobile fumes
- Humidifier dust
- Nebulizer droplets
- Spray paint dust
- Soil dust
The fact that panel filters remove a wide range of contaminants means that they can be used in the home as well as commercially in businesses too.
How do panel filters work?
Panel filters work by sucking in air using negative pressure.
When this air then comes into contact with the panel filter, the panel filter is able to filter out small, medium and large particles that are traveling through said air.
It does this through several different methods, each designed to capture different size particles (small, medium and large).
Large particles get carried through the filter and stick to the threads of the panel filter through inertial mass effect, whilst lighter particles float through the filter through turbulent flow and get intercepted by the fibres that make up the filter.
Any small particles are then removed through diffusion and move through Brownian motion as they approach the fibrous. The smaller particles randomly hit each other, which reduces their speed and increases the chances of their capture by the panel filter.
What are the advantages of panel filters?
Panel filters have many advantages, including:
- Enhancing the quality of your indoor air
- Ease of use and replacement
- Being very cost-effective
- The ability to remove dust from the air, with pleated panel filters having the highest dust holding capacity
- Preventing the growth of microorganism
What is the difference between panel filters and pleated panel filters?
Pleated panel filters are named as such because the material within the filter has been folded into an accordion-like pattern to form pleats.
The bending pattern enables them to fit inside the frame without increasing the size of the filter.
These pleats increase the surface area and dirt holding capacity of the filters, which makes them more efficient than flat panel filters.
The higher surface area ensures maximum filtration potential and minimum airflow resistance.
Also, the depths of the pleats correspond to that of the holding frame.
The pleats can be spaced at any length dictated by the filtration requirements and can assume narrow U shape or wide V shape.
When should you change your panel filters?
The frequency with which you replace or clean your panel filters really depends on how much contamination there is in the air where your panel filter is being used and the grade of the filter itself.
It’s recommended to install an automated differential pressure gauge with a timed alarm to signal when the filter elements are due for replacement asa visual inspection with the human eye can only detect dirt of up to 40 microns.
Generally speaking most panel filters can last between several days/weeks right the way up to six months, depending on the filtration conditions
How are panel filters rated?
Panel filters are given a rating based on the size of the particles they are able to eliminate from the surrounding air.
Panel filters are usually rated through the minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV system).
The MERV rating system has a scale running from 1-16, where the lower values grade filters that remove large sized particles and higher grades for those that restrain small size particles.
- MERV 1-4: These are mostly primary panel filters and will remove particles above 10 microns in diameter. You will use them in residential window AC units.
- MERV 5-8: The majority are secondary panel filters and remove particles that range from 3-10 microns. You can use them in industrial workplaces, commercial and residential buildings
- MERV 9-12: The panel filters remove particles between 1 and 3 microns. They are suitable for hospitals, laboratories, businesses, and superior residential buildings.
It’s important to note that another rating system (EN 779) was introduced in Europe in 2012 and operated up to 2018.
According to the EN 779 system, primary panel filters range from G1 to G4, while secondary panel filters range from M5 to F9.
Are there quality standards for panel filters?
Yes there are and these vary depending on the country the filters are manufactured in.
Standards also vary from industry to industry. For example;
- ISO 16890 – provides standards for testing and rating filters based on their ability to remove the most harmful particles to human health.
- ISO 5011:2014 – provides guidelines for testing, conditions, reporting, and comparison of panel filters used in combustion engines and compressors.
How much do panel filters cost?
Panel filters can vary in cost quite dramatically depending on the application requirements, the rating and how the filter is constructed.
On the low end of the spectrum, a simple panel air filter for use in a home air conditioning system could cost between £2-£15.
Whereas a large panel filter for industrial use could be in the region of £100+.
We hope this article has helped you to better understand panel filters, how they work and what to look out for.
Please do feel free to browse our range of panel filters on the website and benefit from the fantastic prices we have on offer.
Of course if you have any questions, please feel free to call our expert team on 01747 897479.