The Ultimate Guide To MERV Ratings For Furnace Filters

Many Canadians don’t realize that there are some drastic difference between the types of furnace filters you can use in your home.

You may have come across something called a “MERV rating” and different furnace filters appear to have a different rating.

When browsing for furnace filters you typically see most filters are rated from MERV 8 to MERV 13. Of course there are still some retailers that carry the low quality fiberglass filters too. But assuming you value a higher level of air quality in your home, you will probably find yourself comparing MERV 8 and MERV 13 filters.

Turns out, depending on your unique situation, you may require a specific type of filter for your home.

Well, in order to understand the difference, we must first get acquainted with how the MERV rating scale works.

What’s is a “MERV” rating?

MERV stands for minimum efficiency reporting value and it is basically a measure of how effective a furnace filter is. Although the scale ranges from MERV 1 to 20, the majority of furnace filter retailers only carry filters between MERV 8 to 13.

To put it short, the higher the rating, the more particles the filter will trap and therefore the higher the quality.

So which MERV is appropriate for your home? Well it really depends on your needs.

PureFilters offers 3 different types of MERV ratings, scroll down and see what each rating is able to trap.


Recommended for the average Canadian household.

Able to trap:

  • Common dust
  • Debris
  • Pollen


Recommended for pet owners and homes with infants.

Able to trap:

  • Common dust
  • Debris
  • Pollen
  • Pet dander
  • Car fumes


Recommended for allergy sufferers and homes with elderly residents.

Able to trap:

  • Common dust
  • Debris
  • Pollen
  • Pet dander
  • Car fumes
  • Smoke
  • Bacteria/virus carriers
  • Microallergens

Which MERV rating is right for your home?

Although MERV 8 should be perfectly fine for most households, the cost of an upgrade isn’t all that substantial. We did a detailed comparison between a MERV 8 and a MERV 13 filter, and the differences are quite drastic.

Customers that have upgraded from MERV 8 to MERV 11 or MERV 13 have told us they’ve noticed a drastic difference in their homes, citing:

  • Improvements in sleep
  • Less headaches
  • Increased energy
  • Overall higher quality of living

We spend a large portion of our day, why not maximize the quality of air that we breathe in?

Get started today and select a furnace filter with a MERV rating that’s appropriate for your home!

If you have any questions about MERV ratings, feel free to email us at or call us at 1-888-979-4284.

PureFilters Team

by purefilters

5 thoughts on “The Ultimate Guide To MERV Ratings For Furnace Filters

  1. Eric Kelday says:

    Please advise of your own brand equivalent filter to what I have been buying and the comparative prices of your own brand and the brand I have been buying

  2. Chis Margison says:

    1- Too bad you sent this just after I purchased a year supply from you! Oops!
    2- I was supposed to have free shipping in Ontario by post I guess. That’s what I picked anyway.
    My invoice had a charge of $8.00 which is lower than the Canpar charge on your site for postal code: P0J 1P0. On the other hand the order arrived in two days which was fast.
    3 – I have a Lennox Pure Air system as my wife has serious allergies.
    The filter we use is the : x8789 and you order confirmation number was 528364

    It is a Merv 16 filter. Do you have this or will you have this under your house brand name? And do you have a price for it?
    We are happy with Merv 16 and we have a cat and z dog and we tend to have dust from the road in front of the house. We use 2 of them a year as we have an HRV unit + furnace + air conditioner. All is filtered through the furnace filter and those filters are in use 365 days a year.
    I would love to save money like everyone else. We are retired so…less income of course. Are you still going to carry Lennox in the future or do I have to find a new company to purchase from?
    Will you have a Merv16 filter under your name?
    Thanks for your response

    • purefilters says:

      Hi Chris!

      1 – Not a problem, you can subscribe next time around 🙂
      2 – I just looked up your order, it did have free shipping on it (please confirm). If for some reason you were charged for shipping, please email us at and we can take care of it ASAP.
      3) We don’t have any MERV 16 filters yet, the manufacturing for MERV 16 is a bit more of a complicated process but we are working on it. I will let you know when we do have PureFilters brand MERV 16, shouldn’t be too long into the future. In the meantime, we will still carry the Lennox OEM MERV 16 filters, so not to worry!

      Kind regards,

      PureFilters Team

  3. Pingback: PureFilter’s Guide to Furnace Filter Types | PureFilters

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