What Causes a Dirty Air Filter?

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Air Filter Replacement

It’s important to change your air filter on a regular basis. We usually suggest about every three months. However, there are times where it’s necessary to change it more often, especially when your HVAC unit is running regularly, it may be necessary to change it out more often.

But why does that furnace air filter get so dirty in the first place? Here are just a few reasons why your air filters may need to be changed out more often than others:

1. Pets in your home

If you have pets in the home, especially ones that shed, it is a guarantee that your filter will need to be changed more often. You can help by vacuuming your home and brushing your pet regularly.

If you do have pets in your home, don’t miss our guide to HVAC system care for pet owners.

2. Dust

Has your home recently undergone a renovation, or do you have rooms that don’t get used very often? Dust can accumulate and if it isn’t cleaned, it can wind up in your air filter.

Make sure to change your air filters after a renovation to clear out all the dust, or on a more regular basis if you have a particularly dusty home.

3. Type of air filter

Furnace filters can be made of different materials, and that can affect how often they should be replaced.

Fiberglass filters should typically be changed every month, pleated filters made of polyester or paper should be changed every three to six months and electrostatic filters should be cleaned at least once a month.

4. Thermostat settings

If your thermostat is set to “on”, that means the fan is running constantly, circulating air through your home. If that’s the case, it will send dust and other particles through the filter more often than if you were to use the auto setting.

5. Leaky air ducts

If you have leaks in your ducts, dust could be pulled from other spaces and end up clogging your filter quickly.

It’s important to change out your air filters regularly and to keep an eye on them if any of the above apply to you and your home. A dirty air filter will restrict the air flow that can get through, thereby making your HVAC unit work harder to get cool air through your home. Not only will you be making your unit work less efficiently, but because it is working so much harder, your energy bills will actually increase.

If you need advice on which air filter is best for your home or if you want to have new air filters delivered to your doorstep on a customized schedule, call the experts at Crystal Heating and Cooling today at 519-756-6888.