Regular Air Filter Maintenance Is Crucial for Your Home's HVAC System
One of the most important - and easiest - ways to keep your furnace or air conditioner running smoothly is to regularly clean or replace the air filter in your unit. A clogged or dirty air filter blocks the flow of air into the HVAC system and into your home. This means your system will work harder to reach the temperature on the thermostat and use more energy in the process. In addition to reduced energy efficiency, dirty air filters can create unhealthy conditions in your home.
Types of Filters
Filters are usually located in your furnace or air conditioner itself or along the length of the duct carrying outside air into the system. Filters come in a variety of types and sizes. Some are disposable and must be replaced when dirty; others are reusable components that you have to remove and clean on a regular basis. Certain units use a single air filter, and other systems use multiple filters. Check the manuals for your furnace or air conditioner to determine the exact location and type of air filters for your system.
Dirty Air Filters
Dirty air filters block the normal flow of air into your air conditioning system. This means your system will use considerably more energy to reach your home’s target temperature. Clogged air filters can also result in dirt or dust flowing directly into your furnace or your air conditioner’s evaporator coil, which reduces its ability to absorb heat. If you have a gas furnace, decreased air flow from a blocked filter can cause your furnace to burn less efficiently, which may result in a buildup of carbon monoxide around the furnace area.
Cleaning Your Filters
During peak cooling and heating seasons, you should check your air filter every month or two. If you have pets that shed, live in a dusty area or run your system constantly, your filter may need to be replaced or cleaned more frequently.
If you have questions or need advice about changing or cleaning your home’s air filter, contact an HVAC pro. You can also save both time and money by signing up for an AC maintenance program like Casteel’s Preventative Maintenance Program. Professional techs will perform regular inspections of your equipment and ensure that your filters are clean and the air is flowing properly through your system. Not only will you get a discounted service price, an AC system that runs efficiently will also use less energy and cut down on your utility costs.