Maintaining your furnace can go a long way in the period in between furnace service appointments. One of the simplest, and essential, ways to maintain your furnace lies in replacing your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter could contribute to a host of unfavorable issues for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy expenses are month after month.
So what goes in to deciding when you should change your furnace filter?
- Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters normally need to be changed every month and 3 inch filters ought to be replaced every three months, depending on the recommendations of the filter company.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it may make sense to replace your filter more often due to pet dander. If a family member suffers from allergies or asthma, consider switching out your home’s air filter more often to help with their symptoms.
Now you’re likely wondering how to replace your furnace filter. Inevitably this will differ depending on what furnace you have, but normally:
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- Open or take off the air filter panel around the bottom of your furnace to uncover an open compartment.
- On the top of that open compartment is where your furnace filter is resting on two metal brackets.
- There will be a little space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to remove one end of the filter and take it out of the compartment.
- When adding the new filter, check the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to be sure you’re installing the filter in the right direction. In the majority of cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace.