The answer is yes, it is perfectly acceptable to put a regular filter in an electronic air cleaner (EAC). This is often done when the EAC has broken and you choose not to repair it. To convert your electronic air filter into a multimedia air filter, you must contact an authorized heating and cooling professional. This is because the power supply to the electronic air filter must be permanently disconnected or deactivated to avoid any possible fire risk. Once the power supply is disconnected, you can replace the metal cells of the air filter with 4 inch thick multimedia filters of the appropriate dimensions.
The multimedia air filter replaces the electronic cell. Honeywell recommends using the FC100 or FC200 multimedia air filter. An electronic air filter uses static electricity to give particles a positive charge when they enter the filter. Normal filters have a low MERV index, between one and four, but these filters also have higher MERV ratings. These filters capture smaller particles, but a typical home air conditioner or boiler isn't powerful enough to pass air through them.
Air filters receive a minimum efficiency value (MERV) rating, which indicates their efficiency. Assuming that the pleated filter doesn't produce too much air resistance and reduces airflow too much, it should work very well in normal air cleaning, perhaps better than the old one in some ways. It is important to combine regular filter changes with annual preventive maintenance on your air conditioner to get the best possible performance from this system. If you are replacing your electronic cells with disposable filters, make sure that they are not too restrictive and do not reduce airflow too much. Otherwise, it may be necessary to use a 4-fold filter instead of the electronic cells.