Why Should You Change Your AC Filter?
In our busy lives, remembering to change your AC filter often tends to slip under all of our radars. Unfortunately, forgetting to change your air filter can lead to drastic system failures. Without proper air flow, dust and contaminants can get into your AC system. Once this happens, the dust can jam the vital moving parts such as your fan or motor. When this strain occurs on your system, it will draw more power to overcome the issue. This leads to the unit becoming less energy efficient and can also cause cooling system breakdowns.
Ideally, you should change an air filter every three months. However, this may vary for your home depending on your family’s needs. For example, if you have pets or suffer from allergies, you’ll probably need to change it more often.
If you haven’t changed your AC filter in a long time, the following signs are clues that it needs replacing:
One clear sign that your AC filter needs replacing is when the back of the unit is too hot. If the filter is very dirty, you may even feel warm air coming out of the back of the unit. A clogged filter forces the air conditioner to work harder to keep the house cool. This will lead to more frequent AC repairs and, ultimately, shorten the lifespan of the unit. Lessen the load by simply changing the AC filter regularly.
The Air Isn’t Cold Enough
You can attribute reduced HVAC efficiency to various problems. If you notice that your air conditioner isn’t cooling as it normally does or is blowing warm air, the first thing you should check is the AC filter. A dirty air filter won’t allow that refreshing cool air to properly pass through it, leaving you sitting in a pool of unpleasant sweat. If, however, the air filter is not the problem, an experienced HVAC service technician should investigate the problem and perform the required maintenance.
When the electricity bill starts to creep higher, it can sometimes be difficult to determine the cause. It could be a faulty appliance or a poorly functioning AC system. In Florida, we expect higher electric bills during the summer months because we rely so heavily on air conditioning when the heat strikes. However, if your electric bill is higher than normal, the culprit could be a dirty air filter. This is why preventative HVAC maintenance is so important. Keeping your HVAC system well-maintained helps it operate more efficiently. As a result, it lowers your energy bill.
You’re Suffering More Allergy Attacks
Allergy sufferers should be particularly diligent when it comes to changing air filters. Dust pollen, and pet dander cling to the air filter. When the filter becomes saturated with such pollutants, they’ll get blown out and circulated in the air throughout your home. As a result, you’ll suffer the misery of allergy attacks more frequently.
Your home’s air conditioner can either impact your health positively or negatively. Use the AC system to improve your home’s indoor air quality rather than worsen it. Keep the AC filter clean, and consider adding an air purifier. You should soon notice a decrease in symptoms.
Another common sign of a dirty air filter is finding dust on surfaces and furniture near the vents. Compare these surfaces to other surfaces farther away. If the surfaces nearest the vents are dustier while others appear cleaner, it’s a sure sign that your air filter needs replacing.
One clever way to determine if the air filter is dirty is to do the “white sheet test.” This involves hanging a clean white sheet approximately 5 inches away from one of the vents for at least one hour. If the sheet turns gray, you’ve got a filthy air filter. The grayer the sheet, the dirtier the filter.
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