Most homeowners know that routine maintenance of an HVAC system is recommended, but many don’t know why! Something as simple as changing your air filter can have an enormous impact on your air quality and can even save you money down the road. Below, we’re going over what an air filter is, as well as the top five costs associated with neglecting to change it in your home.
What is an Air Filter?
To understand the importance of changing your air filter, you first need to know what it is. All HVAC systems circulate heated or cooled air to regulate the temperature in your home. To protect you and your family from indoor air pollution and contaminants that can be made worse by recirculating air, your system scrubs the air clean using an air filter.
How Often Should You Replace It?
Your air filter cleans every bit of air that is circulated throughout your home, and it removes dust, pet hair and dander, smoke particles, and airborne cooking residue from the air you breathe on a daily basis. As such, your hardworking filter needs to be changed at least once every 3 months.
This may seem pretty frequent, but when you consider the below downsides associated with not replacing your air filter, you’ll happily commit to swapping it out every 90 days!
1) Wasted Money on Heating/Cooling
Dirty or clogged air filters can decrease the flow of air through your ductwork, and the longer the air sits in your ducts, the less likely it is to provide necessary heated or cooled air to your living space. Slow airflow will cause loss of heat in the winter and loss of cooled air in the summer, which means you waste more money heating or cooling and get less of an effect inside your home.
2) Heating/Cooling Takes Longer
Slowed airflow through dirty air filters not only means the conditioned air will reach your living space more slowly, but it also means your equipment will take longer to heat or cool rooms due to fluctuating air temperatures in your ducts. You’ll end up waiting longer for your rooms to reach your desired temperature.
3) AC System Clogs and Fails
Of course, with all of that added strain on your system, you can be sure that it will break down over time. The harder your heating/cooling equipment works, the more likely it is to clog and fail under the increased demand.
4) Stale Air
If the flow rate of the air in your ducts and your home is slowed, there’s more of a chance that any particles or air contaminants settle into your ductwork or onto surfaces in your home. Stale air can make your home feel stuffy at best, but it can also lead to mold growth or the spread of sickness in more extreme cases.
5) Decrease in Indoor Air Quality
Most importantly, a fresh air filter is designed to scrub your air clean of secondhand smoke, pet dander, dust, allergens, and other contaminants. Neglecting to replace your filter regularly can lead to a decrease in your indoor air quality, which could have negative effects on your health.
To have your air quality tested, your filters changed, and to ensure that your air filter and equipment are working properly to clean your air, contact one of our highly-trained professionals who will walk you step-by-step through the process of cleaning and maintaining your system.