Why Do I Need to Change my HVAC Air Filters?

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HVAC air filters are an essential part of your HVAC system. If HVAC air filters aren’t changed often enough, this can lead to an increase in energy consumption, inadequate heating and cooling, unhealthy air quality and more. Regularly replacing your air filters is an easy way to keep energy costs down and improve the air you breathe.

If it is time to change your HVAC air filters, bear in mind that there are many different types of HVAC air filters available. Some of these include:

  • Fiberglass
  • Pleated
  • Washable
  • Electrostatic
  • HEPA
  • UV

Fiberglass HVAC air filters are the most commonly used, but your choice will depend on various personal preferences, including whether you need to filter out allergens, would prefer a re-usable HVAC air filter and more.

Air Conditioner Filters

Air conditioner filters protect your AC unit by filtering out dust and dirt particles in the air. Air conditioner filters capture the dust so that it doesn’t access the AC unit itself and clog the coils, air ducts and blower fans.

When the air conditioner filters need to be changed, they are too full of dirt and dust to continue working properly. Airflow from the AC unit will become restricted if air conditioner filters are unclean.

If the AC unit continues to run with the air conditioner filters clogged, the cold air is trapped in the unit. Thanks to the clogged air conditioner filters, the AC unit will run very inefficiently, wasting energy without properly cooling the room. As the air conditioner filters are unable to capture any more debris, this can also cause a problem for those that suffer from allergies. After an extended period, clogged air conditioner filters can eventually cause ice to build up on the coils. It is recommended that air conditioner filters should be changed or cleaned at least every 90 days to keep your AC unit running smoothly and in good health.

Furnace Air Filters

Inside your furnace is a return duct that pulls in air from the room. This air naturally contains, dust, dirt and pet hair that could clog the furnace. The furnace air filters therefore protect the furnace by preventing this debris from entering the unit. When the furnace air filters are clogged, they are no longer able to capture dust and prevent it from being recirculated. 

When the furnace air filters are not regularly changed, the unit will become inefficient. It will also eventually shorten the life of the furnace. Depending on the unit, furnace air filters should be replaced between every 30 and 90 days.

Heat Pump Air Filters

Heat pumps are used to move warm air from one place to another. They might move hot air from the ground to heat a building, or they might move hot air out of a building to cool it.

Similarly to air conditioner filters and furnace filters, heat pump air filters prevent debris, dust, pollen and hair from entering the heat pump and damaging the heating and cooling coils. Clean heat pump air filters are essential to an efficiently working heat pump. If your heat pump is used on a daily basis, it is optimum to change heat pump air filters approximately once per month.

RTU Filters

RTU (Roof Top Units) are HVAC systems that are located on the roof, often used in shopping centers, warehouses, and other large, open spaces. The system usually takes care of heating, air conditioning and ventilation for the whole building.

Just like in smaller air conditioning units and other HVAC systems, the RTU relies on RTU filters to capture dust from the outside air to prevent dust and debris from entering the system. Ductwork, mechanical components and the RTU fan must be kept clean and free from dust. A build-up of dust from RTU filters that are not clean will make the RTU less efficient and can eventually cause equipment failure. Some HVAC experts recommend that RTU filters should be changed every 30 days, while others suggest 3 or 4 times per year.

Changing Your HVAC Air Filters

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