Considering that a carbon air filter is just a metal device with charcoal inside it – there is a lot to consider when it comes to choosing one.
Among the decisions you’ll make are what you use it for, the size filter you get, what extras you want + more.
We’ve put together a full list below to save you time researching, but also so that you don’t have any surprises when your filter arrives or when you use it.
Tips For Choosing/Buying A Carbon Air Filter
1. Decide what you want to use it for, and check the brand of filter you want is designed for your use
Air filters are used for a range of different activities that involve cleaning the air of chemicals or smells.
For example, you might use one or several for –
- Your home when cleaning general odors
- In your house for ridding cigarette smoke
- In or outside a grow room – as an intake filter or exhaust filter – usually with ducting and a fan
- For a plant or gardening related tent or box
- In a workshop for ridding paint, welding and solvents type air and smell
- In a curing/drying room
- In a chemical room of any description
- At work in some capacity
Whatever you want to use your carbon air filter for, make sure the product/manufacturer’s instructions mention this use as acceptable.
If a particular activity or use if outlined, pay attention to how the manufacturer advises the filter can be used in that scenario.
2. Check out the brand history, and how the filter is packed and delivered
There are probably a handful of reputable carbon air filter brands – which you can check out here.
The other could be quick start ups that might not be able to offer you the technical or customer support that you require, or they could have a sub quality product.
Make sure whatever brand you buy from, that you try to check out their delivery history, as the last thing you want is a filter that arrives damaged, or with stains everywhere from charcoal that hasn’t been packed properly.
3. Pick a size, and check the CFM ratings compared to your air space you want to purify
Good carbon air filters come in a range of sizes – each with different dimensions and air volume capacities.
The two main dimensions you want to check for are:
- The height and width of the main filter body
- The width and depth of the flange
Additionally, look at the stated CFM (cubic feet of air per minute that can be absorbed by the filter), and compare it to the volume of air in the room, box, tent etc. that you want to filter.
4. Pick a kit and double check what is included
Standard inclusions in any kit should be the filter body, flange, pre-filters, and pre-filter elastics.
You should also get the carbon that goes inside the filter – and they should specify whether it is active carbon.
5. Pick your accessories and extras
Apart from the above inclusions, you might also choose to add some or all of the following accessories, but it depends what you need the filter for:
- Inline fan
- Fan Speed Dial
- Adjustable rope hangers to hang your grow lights
- Humidity monitor
- You may also choose to get a grow tent and growing light system if you don’t have one yet
6. Look at construction of the filter
Usually filters are made of aluminium which is very lightweight.
But, also check the flange and how it is fixed.
Some flanges are reversible – which means you can remove them and flip the filter body.
Others are riveted in place and you cannot flip the filter.
7. Check warranties, and how often you have to replace the filter itself, as well as the pre-filters
Check the following:
- How long warranties for the filter are
- The lifetime expectation of the filter
- The lifetime expectation of pre-filters, and how often you should change them over (usually when they show signs of being dirty)
8. Check if professional installation is required
Some filters might require professional help to install.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions to see whether this is the case.