What is the Best Material for Air Filter Frames?


Good air quality is a must due to all the harm pollution can do. If the air is not filtered correctly, you are susceptible to air pollutants that could affect your health eventually. Filters do a great job of protecting you from all that damage. Filters must be placed on quality frames to do their job properly.

Since filter frames are so important for holding the filters in place, they can have different levels of security and the quality varies based on the materials they are created from. For example, some materials are better suited for frames in HVAC systems, and others are more suited for frames in cars or airplanes that are constantly moving.

The differences among filter frames are also visible from one manufacturer to another. Some offer more quality, some provide lower prices, and some offer more flexibility, customizing the frames based on your needs. Below is a list of some of the best materials you can choose from for air filter frames.

Paperboard Filter Frames

The most common type of filter is the paperboard air filter frame. Paperboard is flexible and easy to cut and shape based on your needs. Being cheaper than other filter frames does not mean it won’t do the job properly.

Paperboard frames are some of the most durable in the market compared with their production costs. Combined with paper filters, they will keep dust away without any issues in all types of vents or ducts, no matter their size.

Paperboard is easier to cut than metal, hence its easy customization. The cutting process is not complex since a die cutter will do the job. Since frames can be perfectly cut, there will be no room for particles to pass. With some other types of frames, dust or mold can pass through the gap between the frame and the duct’s wall. These advantages make paperboard filter frames among the very best filter frames on the market.

Polyester Frames

This type of frame is similar to paperboard regarding protection and flexibility. The main difference between them is that polyester frames can be used in environments where humidity and moisture are always present like your beautiful enclosed patio.

A standard paperboard frame would get wet and damaged in that environment and its life span would not last long. Polyester, on the other hand, is water-resistant and can save money by not being replaced too often. Polyester is resistant to various chemicals as well.

The most important function of polyester frames is that they will not let chemicals pass through, which is a big advantage when it comes to health. For example, if the freon in the AC leaks and somehow gets on the filters and frames, the polyester will not break. Apart from their durability, there won’t be any space between the wall and the frame due to its customization.

Aluminum Frames

Aluminum filters are mainly used for larger-scale HVAC systems. Such HVACs are used in factories, schools, or any other large building. Aluminum is used for buildings because it is durable, and isn’t as heavy as one might expect. Aluminum frames will last a long time. It is resistant to chemicals, and does not rust easily.

Usually, aluminum frames are used at the end of the duct, which leads outside. Often, they are used in combination with aluminum filters because they need to be attached to another resistant metal.

The frame needs to be durable because, most of the time, it will face a harsh environment on the outside. Sometimes rocks, branches, or even small animals will hit the frame. It needs to easily block such threats because if any larger object gets inside the HVAC system, the damages will be significant and costly.

A disadvantage of such frames is they are difficult to cut. Special equipment is needed and can’t be done at home. Usually, this can be done only in factories with laser-cutting technology.

Wooden Frames

Wooden frames lost some of their popularity because they are not as durable as other materials. Some people still like wooden frames because they can make them at home without any special equipment. They just need a wood saw to cut some wood planks, nails, or adhesive to stick them together and tape measure to make the frame fit.

However, wooden frames decay over time if not appropriately maintained and covered in polyurethane polish. Such frames are used mainly by people who love to build their products or do not want to spend money on professional frames.

Final Words

When deciding upon the best material for air filter frames, it’s important to consider their overall efficiency regarding your health rather than just their durability just like you did with your above-ground pool. Filter frames that are easily customizable are also highly desired as they can fit perfectly in any HVAC system. In the end, it is the buyer’s decision which filter frames suit them the best.

Leo Fletcher
With a Master’s in Engineering from Georgia Tech and a distinguished 25-year system design and analysis career, Leo Fletcher has been a vital part of various teams. His professional journey began as a systems engineer, where he developed a keen eye for technical details and system efficiencies. He has contributed to numerous technical journals and workshops, aiming to simplify complex concepts for a broader audience. He is a passionate woodworker outside the office, a hobby reflecting his love for precise, crafted outcomes.

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