There’s a fairly common misconception amongst Roswell area homeowners in regards to their HVAC air filters. Given their name, people assume that air filters do exactly as their name implies–filter the air. But there are different types of air filters, and the one that comes standard with your furnace installation isn’t there to protect your air, but rather to protect the furnace.
Now, there are different kinds of “air filters,” air filtration systems, and air purifiers with replaceable filters that are designed specifically to filter out your indoor air, making it cleaner and easier to breathe. But the furnace air filter works to keep debris such as dust, dirt, and more out of the furnace and off of the heating system’s sensitive components.
There are also different types of HVAC air filters, including fiberglass mesh, pleated, and even “permanent” air filters. Read on to learn more!
“How Often Should I Replace My Furnace Filter?”
This is going to depend on what type of furnace filter you have. We mentioned above the different kinds–fiberglass mesh, pleated, and permanent filters. Permanent filters don’t need to be replaced, but they do need to be checked at least once a month during periods of system use, and cleaned. Remember, if you use water to clean your air filters, they must be absolutely dried off before replacing.
The problem with leaving a furnace filter in too long is that it gets too clogged up with dust and other debris, and it restricts airflow. As a result, your furnace runs longer, and technically “works harder,” in order to do its job. This is inefficient and exacerbates wear and tear on the system.
As for mesh filters, it will depend on their rating, but a good rule of thumb is that your filter should be replaced every 1-3 months, which is also dependent on the level of contaminants in your home. A household with pet hair and cigarette smoke, for example, may need furnace filter replacements more often than one without.
Pleated filters are typically rated pretty high and can go about 2-3 months between changes, but it’s important to check on it at least once a month.
“Can I Replace My Own Furnace Filter?”
Yes! Changing your own furnace filter is the one maintenance task that you can, and should, do on your own. You’ll be able to locate the filter at the return register, and there will be arrows on the filter showing you how to remove it and how to install a new one.
“Are All Furnace Filters the Same Size?”
Nope. Your furnace filter size will depend on the size of your furnace. You’ll want to see what your furnace came with, and replicate that furnace size. If you’re unsure, please feel free to contact our team with questions.
“How Do I Check My Furnace Filter?”
As we stated above, you’ll look for the filter near the return register. If there is enough dust and debris on the furnace filter that you cannot see any light through it, it’s time to replace it!