What Does a Furnace Filter Do?
- Your furnace filter traps airborne contaminants to clean your air, right? While yes, it does do that, that’s not exactly its job – despite what most people believe.
- The primary function of a furnace filter is to trap airborne contaminants, not for air quality purposes but to keep them out of your heating and cooling system. However, because the filter removes contaminants for the system’s benefit, air quality also benefits from their removal.
How Long Do Furnace Filters Last?
The furnace filter’s lifespan may vary based on the type of furnace you use, the type of furnace filter you choose, and your indoor air quality needs.
As we looked at the above section, some filters are reusable, while others are lower prices and won’t last as long as. However, as a general rule, your furnace filter will last for 3-6 months before changing.
The size of the furnace filter that you have can also impact how long your air filter will last between filter changes. Here are some general outlines to consider:
Which Furnace Filter Should I Buy?
Filters are all different. Some filters, traditional-style and inexpensive, handle traditional problems. These are not high-efficiency filters capable of collecting every possible contaminant—there are modern filters that can even collect and remove bacteria and viruses.
Most filters have a recommended life span included on the packaging, but if not then abide by these simple timelines: conventional filters should be replaced every 1 to 3 months, while high-efficiency filters will last 6 months; longer in some cases.
To prevent yourself from forgetting the lifespan of the filter, write on the filter the exact date when you put it in place. That way if you are wondering if it’s time to replace it you can always consult the filter.
Also, setting reminders in your phone or writing an arbitrary date on the year’s calendar should, hopefully, help you to remember!
What Are The Different Types Of Furnace Filters?
The filters used in your home’s heating and cooling system can significantly impact your comfort, energy bill, and indoor air quality. Not only does your furnace filter keep your air clean, but it also regulates how hard your furnace needs to draw in air to circulate throughout your home.
- HEPA Filters: These are high-efficiency filters that can trap up to 99% of airborne particulates in your home. These HVAC filters are more expensive than other options, but they are tested to capture 0.3 microns or larger pollutants.
- Pleated Filters: These are the most common type of filters used by most homeowners because they are inexpensive and work for most situations. They are not as efficient as HEPA filters, but they are much less expensive.
- Electrostatic Filters: These air filter home solutions are semi-permanent because they are washable. The filters work by trapping pollutants with an electronic charge that attracts dust, smoke, and pollen.
- Fiberglass Filters: These filters are most commonly found in furnace systems because they are effective at trapping large dust particles. These filters tend to be the least expensive compared to the other filter types.
Why Is Changing Furnace Filters So Important?
- Changing furnace filters is so very important, not just for your HVAC system but for your household. It’s all too easy to skip a filter change when your HVAC equipment is tucked away out of sight, but this important task must be made a priority.
- It’s smart to check your filter monthly to assess its condition. Sometimes, your system may require changing furnace filters early, but it’s difficult to tell if you never look for yourself! Take a peek at the filter once a month and replace it when you notice its surface media is completely covered in contaminants.
- Because changing furnace filters is so important, here are a few strategies to help ensure you remember to perform this essential home maintenance task.
- Mark monthly filter checks as well as changes at the appropriate interval on your wall calendar or within your day planner.
If you prefer your smartphone’s calendar app, schedule reminders with an alarm that sounds to catch your attention.
Link checking and changing furnace filters with other important tasks you complete each month. As the filter’s condition can impact how much energy the system consumes, check it when you pay your monthly utility bill! Do not file that bill away until you check or change your filter.