Building owners obtain points in LEED system with proper filtration.
The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System represents the U.S. Green Building Council’s effort to provide a national standard for what constitutes a “green building.” It is a design guideline and third-party certification tool that has become increasingly popular over the past several years as a way to improve occupant well-being, environmental and energy performance and economic returns. The LEED rating system covers all aspects of the design and construction of a building including air filtration.
The specific needs for air filtration are the following: 1. A requirement is that the building meet ASHRAE 62.2 standards which means it must have at least MERV 6 filtration to be eligible. 2. During construction if air handlers must be used, filtration media with a MERV 8 rating must be used at each return air grill. 3. After construction MERV 13 filters should be installed and a two-week flush-out at 100% outside air should be conducted before occupancy. 4. New MERV 13 filters should be installed prior to occupancy. Items 2, 3 and 4 in this list should be completed to receive points in the LEED rating system.
There are various types of filters with a MERV 13 – everything from bags to mini-pleats. Each has different design requirements and pressure drop. We would suggest that building owners and designers consult with a Certified Air Filter Specialist (CAFS) to obtain the best information on the optimum filters and pre-filters to obtain LEEDS certification.