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Replacing a Six Inch Pleated Filter with a One Inch Filter

Replacing a Six Inch Pleated Filter with a One Inch Filter
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Jonathan Asked:

I am going to put a new furnace in my house  and there is not much space.  If I still use the 16 x 25 x1 inch filter holder, that will give me more space but will I be at a disadvantage by not getting a 16 x 25 x 6 inch filter holder? Will the larger filters have less resistance and be able to filter better?

compare 6 inch filter to 1 inch filter

Sometimes it’s necessary to modify your system due to new components being added or removed and one of the most common changes is to the filter that your furnace or air conditioner uses.

When changing from one filter size to another there are really only a couple of things that you may want to take into consideration before proceeding and assuming both filters have the same MERV rating there is really no reason not to do it.

  1. A one inch filter will have to be changed more often than a 6 inch filter because the one inch filter won’t have the same dust loading capacity as the six inch filter. This is because the six inch filter has more filter material than the one inch filter. Looking at the pictures above you can clearly see how much more material there is in the thicker filter.
  2. The second thing to consider is that the 6 inch filter will have less impact on air flow than a one inch filter because there is more surface area for the air to pass through.

All pleated air filters are designed to have no more than 1inch of static pressure across them when they are new. As the filter becomes dirty the static pressure increases to about 2inches at which point it should be replaced. By changing the filter more often this potential problem is eliminated.



P.S. For more information about how filters are rated check out air filter ratings and our MERV rating chart.

About the author: Don has been working in the HVAC industry for more than 25 years and shares his experience and knowledge on this site. If you find the information presented here helpful please share with your friends.

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