When Should I Change My AC Filter?

May 6, 2019 9:26 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

The filter in your air conditioning unit plays a crucial role in maintaining the air quality in your home. By regularly swapping out the filter, you can be sure that it will remain effective at removing any contaminants in the air, capturing them before the air circulates into your living areas. A dirty filter cannot capture those contaminants as effectively, which means more of them will be left in the air you breathe in your home, which could result in developing or worsening respiratory conditions.

But that’s not the only benefit of changing out your air conditioning filter. Doing so makes the system perform more efficiently. When the filter is clogged up with dirt and contaminants, air will not pass through the system as easily, which means the equipment will have to work harder to push air through. That extra stress not only does a number on your energy efficiency (as the machinery will run more frequently), but it also makes it more likely that certain components in your system will wear down faster, necessitating repairs or replacement.

Finally, changing your AC filter on a regular basis allows you to keep your home more comfortable. Because clean filters make it easier for air to pass through, you don’t have to worry as much about your home having difficulties getting cool and comfortable due to restricted airflow.

Determining when to make the change

So, when should you swap out your filter? If you notice your home getting dustier than usual, or that your cooling system cycles longer than it typically does, these are signs that you should probably inspect your filter. If the filter is clearly gray and packed with dirt and dust, then you know you need to make the switch.

The frequency with which you should change your filter varies a bit depending on the recommendations of the manufacturer, how frequently you use your air conditioner and some other characteristics of your home.

If, for example, you have a filter with a low MERV rating, you’ll need to change it more frequently than you would a high-efficiency filter. Be sure to check the packaging on the filter as well to see the manufacturer’s recommendations for changing your filter.

As a general rule, you can expect the filter to need to be changed more frequently when the HVAC system sees heavier use—this means during the peak of summer and winter, because those are the times of year in which the air conditioner and furnace are going to be running most often. You can also expect to change the filter more frequently if you have pets on your home, or if anyone in your home smokes.

Still, the best practice is to check the filter once a month or so and replace it as soon as you notice the buildup of debris has gotten to a point where efficiency could be reduced.

For more information, contact KVK Inc. As a trusted HVAC service in central Kansas, we are prepared to do what it takes to get your system operating properly.

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