Top 5 Best Rated Washable AC Filters (*2020 Review*)

Do want to find the best washable filters for your furnace or AC?

We have you covered.

Washable hvac filters are a great way to reduce the monthly expense of purchasing new AC filters. 

In this review, you will learn...

best washable furnace filters
  • Our top choice for the best washable furnace filter
  • How to install a reusable electrostatic filter
  • How to clean a washable AC filter
  • Why furnace filters are important for the health of your hvac (and lungs)
  • How washable filters are different than other AC filters

If you have always wanted to improve the quality of air in your home, help the environment,  extend the lifespan of your HVAC, and save money --- then high quality washable filters may be for you.

Let's get started!

Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

  • Washable & reusable
  • Many positive customer reviews
  • Wash once a month
  • Improve home air quality

My overall top pick for washable hvac filters is the 6-stage electrostatic filter by Trophy Air.

Our Top 5 Picks

The wide range of washable HVAC filters available today can make it overwhelming for anyone to choose the best washable HVAC filters. To make your purchasing process less tedious, we have researched and reviewed and come up with the best 5 washable HVAC filters. They are:

  1. Washable 6-Stage Electrostatic Air Filter By Trophy Air

  2. K&N Home Reusable Air AC Furnace Filter

  3. Washable HVAC Filter Permafoam By Trophy Air

  4. Smilie Cut-to-Fit Washable Air Filter

  5. 6-Stage Electrostatic Washable Home Air Filter

What Are Washable HVAC Filters?

Washable filters for your AC are re-usable and last from 3-5 years with monthly cleaning. These filters are also called electrostatic filters because they use static electricity to filter out particles from the air. As the dust flows from the initial layer of filter material, an electric charge makes the particles heavier, and causes them to stick to the deeper filter layers.

Just like with disposable filters, the main thing to compare is the MERV rating. According to Wikipedia, there have been numerous studies that say residential homes should aim for a filter with a MERV rating from 7-13. In fact, these studies have shown that MERV ratings higher than 13 in general do not outperform the lower MERV ratings --- and may even damage your HVAC system by causing it to run harder.

To clean a washable HVAC filter, simply follow the manufacturer recommendations. The most common way to clean a washable filter is to take it outside, and to clean it with a garden hose. Simply allow it to dry, and reinstall the filter.

If your washable filter has an arrow, or instructions in which side to install the filter, then please follow manufacturer recommendations. However, unlike disposable filters, the direction of washable filters likely will not matter.

Read Also: Top 5 Best Rated UV Lights For HVAC

What Are The Benefits of Washable AC Filters?

The main benefit of washable filters is that they last a number of years, so you won't have to replace it monthly (and I find most people forget). If you add up the cost of buying a disposable filter, the cost can be sizable. For a washable filter, it is only a one time cost.

Of course, the downside is that you have to clean and dry the filter every month --- but at least you won't have to drive to the Big Box store and buy a new one.

Here are some of the benefits of a high quality washable filter...

  • Save money from buying new filters every month
  • Improve indoor air quality
  • Extend the life and efficiency of your HVAC system
  • Reduce contaminants and pollutants in your home

Read Also: The Best Whole House Humidifiers (Review)

How To Install & Maintain Washable HVAC Filters?

The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors gave tips on how you can install your filter. These tips have been simplified into a step-by-step process below:

  • Step 1: Turn off your HVAC unit: This ensures that you don’t get hurt or damage your HVAC system or the filter while installing it.
  • Step 2: Locate your filter in your air handler. There is usually a horizontal filter cover that you will have to open. With some furnaces, you will have to unscrew the cover in order to install the filter.
  • Step 3: Remove the old filter. This should easily be done by sliding it out.
  • Step 4: Insert your new filter. If your washable filter has an arrow, make sure that the arrow is installed facing the furnace (the direction of airflow). If there is no arrow, then it doesn't matter which direction the filter faces. 
  • Step 5: Maintain your filter by washing it regularly with water, most people just take it outside and hose it off. Wait for it to dry, and re-install.

Read Also: The Best Low Wattage Space Heaters

How To Pick The Best Washable HVAC Filters?

There are various kinds of filter you can get for your HVAC system. However, one thing that all consumers of washable HVAC filters should know when purchasing a filter for your HVAC system is the dimensions of the filter slot.

If you currently have a disposable filter, you can simply remove that filter, and look at the dimensions on the side. As long as the disposable filter actually fits (slides in and out easily) and completely fits, you can use this dimension for your washable filter.

The primary purpose of the HVAC filter is to protect your A/C while the second function is to reduce the air pollution in your home. Therefore, if you want to pick the best washable HVAC filter, the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach advised that you should consider the integrity of the manufacturer and the MERV rating of the filter since there is no specific standard for HVAC filters

How Are Washable HVAC Filters Different Than Other Types of HVAC Filters? 

There are many other types of HVAC filters apart from the washable ones. These include disposable filters, electronic air cleaners, high efficiency filters and so on. However, when it comes to their performance, durability and air quality, these filters differ.

In terms of durability, washable HVAC filters beat disposable filters any time. While washable filters require you to wash them regularly perhaps every month, once the disposable filters become clogged with dust and particles, you have to throw them away and acquire another one. Disposable filters don’t last long and they require you to often purchase filters

Also, HVAC filters are known to reduce the amount of energy consumed by your HVAC units by reducing the amount of work they do. However, using electronic air cleaners consumes energy and may create harmful ozone.

Another way of purifying your home's air is by installing an ultraviolet light to kill mold and microbes. I recently wrote a detailed guide on how to install a UV light in your HVAC, check it out here.

Where To Buy The Best Washable HVAC Filters?

There are various online and offline stores where you can purchase washable HVAC filters. However, it is essential that you are sure of the quality of the filters they sell. Also, for the sake of your own convenience, Amazon sells washable filters that have good customer reviews from reputable manufacturers. Shipping is frequently fast and free.

Product Reviews

If you have ever desired a washable filter, this 6-State Electrostatic Washable Filter by Tropy Air is one of the best you can ever get.

This Electrostatic HVAC Air Filter is made of premium materials such as high-grade aluminium that contains four layers and two layers of superior electrostatic media, making the filter very durable and reliable.

By using this washable filter, you can be sure of having a healthy environment while ensuring the longevity of your HVAC system. Help remove your home of dust, pollen and allergens, or any other hazardous substances responsible for itchy eyes, coughing and sneezing. 

  • Easy and quick to install
  • It improves the efficiency of HVAC
  • Reduces dust in your home to the barest minimum
  • Gives cleaner and more quality air
  • Uses dual electrostatic media
  • It improves air flow
  • Easy to wash or replace
  • The filter is not MERV rated
  • It cannot be made into a preferred size apart from manufacturer’s spec

For over five decades the manufacturer of K&N Reusable AC filter, K&N, has been dominating the market with innovative and creative air filtration solutions.

The K&N HVAC filter is made from a durable frame and extruded ABS synthetic polymer material that offers it excellent air filtration capability as well as durability. 

In addition, the filter is capable of adsorbing dust, pollen, bacteria, spores, allergens, and other unwanted particles and microorganisms in your home. 

Whenever it gets dirty, you can easily rinse it using a low-pressure hose and install it back into the filtration system without hassle, therefore you keep maintaining the quality of air in your home.

  • It greatly improves the quality of air in your home
  • High MERV rating of 11
  • Very durable and easy to replace
  • Increases the efficiency and lifespan of your HVAC system
  • Saves you from spending so much money
  • Available in multiple dimensions and sizes
  • Easy to wash and reuse
    • It requires every 30-day visual inspection
    • The filter is not available in all preferred sizes
    • Most suitable only for AC filter

    Designed with two pieces of corrugated aluminium with 20 PPI polyurethane foam stuck in between them, Trophy HVAC filter is known for its unprecedented reliability and effectiveness.

    As the dusty air and particles are wafting in, this filter traps them in, improving the quality of air in your home.

    The Trophy HVAC filter helps reduce the resistance to the flow of air in your house by eliminating contaminants and any particles that cause allergies, sneezing, and coughing, thereby creating a healthy atmosphere for you and your family.

    If you are thinking of getting an HVAC filter, Trophy is one of the best choices.

    • It uses high quality corrugated aluminium with 20 PPI polyurethane foam
    • Efficient in cleaning and purifying air
    • It reduces the work on the HVAC,
    • Very reliable and durable
    • Eliminates contaminants responsible for sneezing and coughing
    • Easy to install, wash and reuse
    • The filter is not available in some sizes
    • It is not an electrostatic filter but nevertheless efficient

    Smilie Synthetic Air Filter is another awesome filter that you can use in your HVAC system.

    It consists of six reusable air filters made of synthetic fibers that are highly efficient at removing dust, pollens, lint, and bacteria that contaminate the air you breathe in. 

    It helps you breathe much better by providing a high air quality environment.

    The filters are quite flexible as they can be cut to whatever size you prefer using a razor knife. This makes the filter more versatile in areas of applications as it can be used in the furnace, window, wall-mounted units, and any other HVAC related unit. Smilie HVAC filter is manufactured by Flanders, one of the largest manufacturers of air filtration products in the United States, so you can always have the best expectation of this product.

    • Reduces common household dust and airborne particles
    • Can be cut to almost any size to fit almost any heating or cooling system
    • Easy to install and lasts up to 1 year
    • Flexibility of use and applications

    • The efficiency of the filter is maximum only up to a year, thereafter you might need to replace it.
    • Most suitable for furnace because furnace emits high level of particles and dust

    Employing the combination of woven and unique polypropylene which are encased in a metal frame, this 6-stage Electrostatic Washable HVAC Filter is highly efficient at removing dust, particles and tobacco smoke in your environment, thereby removing substances that contaminate the air and perhaps cause allergies.

    In addition, this filter consists of 4 layers of highly durable aluminum that are 1 inch in size as well as 2 layers of electrostatic filter media. 

    • It is very durable and can last a long time
    • It uses a premium industrial grade material
    • Capable of working in heavy duty environment
    • It optimally traps dust and particle
    • Doesn’t require electrical connections​
    • It requires monthly cleaning
    • Not available in some customized sizes

    Our Top Pick: Electrostatic Air Filter Replacement Washable 6-Stage HVAC Filter 

    Among all the HVAC washable filters we have selected for you, our top pick still remains the Electrostatic Air Filter, not only because of its capability to enhance the life of your HVAC units but also for great functionalities which are outlined below:

    1. Design: Among many of the filters available today, Electrostatic HVAC Air Filter is one of the few that is made of exquisite design. The filter is made from four-layer high-grade aluminium and two-layer high-quality electrostatic media.

    • Electrostatic media
    • High grade aluminium
    • Different layers that enable better capturing of particles

    2. Reliability and Durability: The high-grade aluminium and electrostatic media are used to make the filter vey reliable. It is not a kind of filter that gets clogged by dust as soon as you install them and it is easy to wash off the dust.

    • It doesn’t get clogged easily
    • Can last a long time
    • Easy to install and wash

    3. Increase the Life and Efficiency of HVAC system: Electrostatic HVAC Air Filter is so reliable that it can trap all hazardous particles that enter into your home such as dust, pollen, bacteria, and allergens. This ensures that these particles do not get to clog your HVAC units and then the units give out maximum output only by working a little. This helps increase how long your HVAC is able to work without getting damaged or needing frequent maintenance.

    • Efficient at capturing particles and dust
    • Reduces your energy expenditures
    • Easy to maintain

    4. Health Benefits: According to the University of Rochester Medical Centre, with the use of filter such as Electrostatic HVAC Air Filter at his full capacity, it can help make a difference in your well-being, especially for people with severe allergies or asthma. This is because the quality of air your home becomes so high that the air flows freely and it prevents your environment from any harmful matters, making you and your family live healthy more than ever. No itchy eyes, no coughing, no sneezing or any kind of allergies.

    • It provides healthy environment
    • Improves air flow
    • Eliminates airborne diseases and allergies

    Read Also: The Best Condensate Pumps

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    Arie Van Tuijl

    Arie Van Tuijl

    Arie is the founder of Home Inspector Secrets, an online resource dedicated to helping owners and buyers understand homes. He is a licensed home inspector in two U.S states and also owns a residential and commercial inspection company.

    About Home Inspector Secrets

    Home Inspector Secrets is an online resource for owners, buyers, and sellers to understand all aspects of home ownership. We have detailed home guides, product reviews, inspection advice, buying tips, and much more.