Experts say 3M Filtrete furnace filters may be an inexpensive, common-sense way of improving the air quality in your home, rather than buying an expensive air purifier that may or may not do much good anyway. ConsumerReports.org suggests that simply replacing your furnace filter four times per year and other easy lifestyle changes may be all you need to do. User reviews indicate the 3M Filtrete works as it is supposed to, with some owners expressing surprise about how much dust and pet dander it caught. But if you have smoke or odor issues, merely changing your furnace filter is unlikely to solve the problem, and furnace filters can reduce airflow in your system. Stand-alone HEPA-filter air purifiers such as the Honeywell Enviracaire 50250-N (*Est. $195) beat 3M Filtrete furnace filters (including the Ultra Allergen 1250 model) at removing smoke in one leading test.
There are fewer professional reviews for allergen-reduction furnace filters than for air purifiers themselves. ConsumerReports.org tests furnace filters against more expensive whole-house air purifiers. Amazon.com has collected plenty of user reviews for this particular Filtrete model, and Epinions.com adds a few more Filtrete user reviews.
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ConsumerReports.org tests 15 do-it-yourself whole-house air filters -- including the 3M Filtrete Ultra Allergen Filter 1250 -- and rates them from best to worst based on their ability to capture dust and smoke particles while allowing free airflow. More complex, professionally installed whole-house air purifiers are also rated, along with freestanding room-size air purifiers.
Review: Air Purifiers, Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Thirty-six users have posted reviews for the 3M Filtrete Ultra Allergen Filter 1250. Two-thirds of them give it a perfect 5 stars for reducing dust in the house. A few critics believe it restricted the airflow to their furnaces, but most users say it works fine.
Review: 3M Filtrete 1250 MPR, 6-Pack, Ultra Allergen Reduction Filter, Contributors to Amazon.com
Just a few users post reviews of the 3M Filtrete here, all giving it the maximum score and some expressing surprise about how much crud it caught. "I've been breathing this junk?" one says.
Review: 3M Filtrete Air Filter -- 6 Pack Air Purifier, Contributors to Epinions.com