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Community and Q&A

ERV Return-Air Filter

rajibroy | Posted in Mechanicals on

Most ducted air handlers are equipped with an air-filter media in the return air plenum. Does the ERV return air need the same? I am planning to use Panasonic Intelibalance ERV. I know that outdoor air is passed thru a MERV 8~13 filter, and return air will meet the exchange core first before being expelled to outside. I am afraid that without a return air filter, the “energy” exchange core may get clogged much sooner!

Does anyone have any experience with a return air filter for ERV?  I am using a dedicated 6″ ~4″ ducts for a trunk and branch system for 75 CFM supply. Any details on duct transition to return air plenum and back to ERV will be super helpful.


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  1. pico_project | | #2

    Our ERV (Renewaire) has a filter on each side. One MERV 13 for incoming fresh air and one MERV 8 to protect the unit.

  2. Expert Member
    Akos | | #3

    I use a standard 3 1/4x10 register for the stale air pickup. Into the back of this register I cut a strip of washable filter mesh folded into a U shape to increase surface area.

    Need to clean it about twice a year, simply take it outside and shake it out. This does a good job of keeping the return ducting clean plus the filter on the ERV barely needs cleaning.

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