If you are having trouble with your furnace, you may wonder whether it is time to change the filter. A clean and unclogged filter is necessary to keep your heating system in top-notch condition. Therefore, changing the furnace filter after some time becomes essential.
Where regular maintenance and upkeep of your home are vital, many homeowners skip the critical task. This comes at the cost of your home’s cooling and heating equipment’s performance- your home’s comfort. In simpler terms, a dirty filter in place compromises the energy costs, comfort, and the HVAC system’s quality.
Clean furnace filters in excellent condition help keep the utility bills low while keeping the air quality high. Continue reading this piece to learn what furnace filters do and how often you should replace yours.
What Does A Furnace Filter Do?
Let us first talk about why furnace filters are necessary. Then we will explain the specifics of when and how often to change them.
Before the air is drawn into the furnace system, the air is cleaned of impurities and dust using the furnace filter. Contaminants are caught in the filter material as the air passes past it. By doing this, pollutants are kept out of the furnace and subsequent HVAC equipment.
Without a filter, the furnace would shortly stop working because the machinery would be too clogged with muck to function correctly.
The use of furnace filters has a few other benefits as well. Furnace filters not only maintain the HVAC system free of impurities but also improve the air quality inside your home. The HVAC system can operate as efficiently as possible thanks to all the air purification, which minimizes the cost of heating and cooling a home.
Why Do You Need to Change Your Furnace Filter?
Changing your furnace filter will improve indoor air quality and help prevent expensive furnace repairs.
The filter’s primary duty is to keep airborne dust, filth, and hair out of your furnace’s internal workings. Instead, all that grime congeals in the filter, which is why it is crucial to change it regularly. If you let it build up, your heating system’s ventilation will be impeded. This may result in your heat exchanger cracking, your furnace blowing cold air, or even making loud noises.
How Often Should You Replace a Furnace Filter?
A typical disposable furnace filter must be replaced at least once every 90 days. However, you should check to see if it clogs once a month.
The filter’s nasty duty is to catch airborne dust, hair, and other small particles so that they won’t damage the parts of your furnace. The filter will limit airflow if it becomes overly clogged with debris. Your furnace will operate worse, and it can even break down. Also possible is a water leak from your furnace.
Change the filter if you see a significant buildup of dirt and a grayish color. New filters are reasonably priced and easily accessible. By changing your furnace filter, you can avoid replacement and fewer problems.
Ideally, You Should Check the Filter Every Thirty Days
Checking your furnace filter every 30 days should become a routine. The filter should be replaced at least once every three months, although it may need to be done more frequently.
Check your air filter once a month to see if it’s grey and clogged with dust. If so, modify it. Your furnace will appreciate it.
You Might Need to Change the Filter More Often
Why is there no definite schedule for replacing your furnace filter? Simple. Every house is unique. It may be a good idea to make modifications more frequently under the following unique circumstances:
1. Your House Is Very Dusty
Furnace filters and dust do not get along. No matter the cause—it can be from a recent renovation—if your home is particularly dusty, check and replace your filter more frequently.
2. You Own a Pet
Although cute, fluffy buddies with fur or feathers will wind up in your furnace air filter. It is advised to change it each month.
3. There’s Asthma or Allergies in Your Family
The indoor air quality of your home is crucial if a family member suffers from breathing issues like asthma or respiratory allergies. Therefore, you must change the filters frequently to keep them clean.
4. You Use Your HVAC A Lot
Your air filter fills up with dirt more quickly when you frequently run your furnace or air conditioner, typically for a significant portion of the year in our GTA climate. Be prepared to adjust it as necessary.
How to Clean or Change Your Furnace Filter
Here are simple steps you can follow in cleaning or replacing your furnace filter to ensure low energy costs and better HVAC performance.
- Turn off your furnace first, always.
- From the return air vent, remove the filter. Note the filter’s placement so you can quickly replace it. Usually, the filter has arrows on it that show you how to put it in the furnace.
- Simply insert a new disposable furnace filter in the exact location to replace an old one.
- Vacuum the dirt from a permanent furnace filter gently. Then use a damp cloth to wipe. Before reinstalling it in the furnace air vent, completely dry it.
- Not sure if your filter is a permanent or disposable one? A plastic frame indicates a permanent filter.
HVAC System Damage
Furnaces and air handlers are heating and cooling equipment with numerous delicate parts. Without filtration, airborne dust, grime, and other contaminants collect on the unit’s parts and enter its numerous chambers. As contaminants build up, the device performs poorer and potentially sustains component damage.
Air does not circulate through the HVAC system effectively when filters are blocked, yet the system is still running. Heating and cooling equipment needs more energy to push air because the dirty filter obstructs its route. The additional labor strains the system’s parts, utilizing more energy and harming machinery.
A filthy filter restricts airflow, which raises the temperature inside the HVAC system and causes overheating. When this happens, it is known as short cycling, and the most typical cause is filthy filters. After it cools down, it starts up again, but the issue still exists. Short-cycling results in excessive energy consumption, increased utility costs, decreased interior comfort, and damage to HVAC systems that necessitates repair and early total system failures.
As contaminants pass through the HVAC system as a result of a filthy filter, they gather in the parts that drain condensate, and clogs develop. Clogs prevent condensate from draining from the house, and it may spill over and cause water damage to the HVAC system and the surrounding areas. Additionally, excessive condensation raises the indoor humidity level, disrupting comfort.
Poor Comfort & Air Quality
Living spaces cannot get enough heating and cooling because airflow is impeded when furnace filters are not changed on time. Homeowners frequently experience hot and cold patches as it becomes difficult to maintain comfort levels.
When the filter is completely covered in contaminants, there is no longer any surface area to catch fresh contaminants as they enter the system. Therefore, regardless of how often you clean, those contaminants remain in the air supply and return to your house, producing allergy symptoms, respiratory problems, physical irritants, and dirtier surfaces!
The importance of changing furnace filters for your household and your HVAC system cannot be overstated. When your HVAC system is hidden and out of sight, it is easy to forget to change the filters, but this crucial task needs to be given top attention.
It makes sense to look closely at your filter’s condition. Determining whether your system needs furnace replacement can be challenging if you do not examine the furnace filter. Once a month, look at the filter and change it when you see that the surface media is entirely covered in impurities.
Our HVAC specialists can help you identify when to change your furnace filters.
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