The Basics of Furnace Filter Replacement

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Your furnace filter is a key component of your HVAC system, and it’s essential that it’s included in your regular HVAC maintenance routine. Replacing your filter regularly is perhaps the easiest way to protect your indoor air quality and keep your system running right all year long.

Benefits of a Filter

It’s easy to overlook the importance of your air filter. You probably don’t see it or worry about it very often. Unless your furnace acts strangely or demonstrates that it needs your attention, most homeowners assume that no news is good news. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.

Over time, filters become clogged due to pollen, pet dander, dust, and other contaminants. Once the filter is clogged, it becomes more difficult for your HVAC system to pull air through it. This causes it to work harder and become less efficient. It may even lead to parts of your unit aging and wearing out prematurely. Typically, this results in higher utility bills and the need for repairs. The filter may seem like a small or insignificant part, but it plays a key role in keeping things working as intended.

How to Choose a Filter

All filters aren’t the same. Most cheap filters do little to enhance your air quality and provide almost no defense against contaminants. An electrostatic filter tends to be a much better option. Electrostatic filters are cut to fit, so they sit snugly in the available space. This prevents air from passing around the filter and bypassing it entirely. The primary feature of an electrostatic filter is its electrical charge. The charge isn’t enough to do you or your system any harm, but it’s adequate for attracting airborne particles. This makes it more effective at capturing and trapping the contaminants.

Another excellent choice is a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate arrestance) filter. You’ve probably heard of HEPA filters before. HEPA filters are used in hospitals and commercial facilities in order to aid with air quality. This may make it sound like HEPA filters are prohibitively expensive, but they’re surprisingly affordable these days. For a home, you don’t need a commercial air filter. A residential HEPA filter is more than sufficient to meet your needs.

When to Change the Filter

No filter lasts forever. Some filters should be changed once every three months. Others say that they should be replaced monthly. Because higher-quality filters tend to collect more pollen and other particles, they usually have to be changed more frequently. However, this also means you get those contaminants out of the air, so you and your family aren’t breathing them in. Follow the guidelines for your particular filter and you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.

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How to Change the Filter

This is the easy part. Changing the filter is usually quite straightforward and shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. If you need help, you may find instructions on the filter packaging or the inside panel near the filter. If you have questions, you can typically find a guide at the manufacturer’s website.

A healthy¬†HVAC system in Gainesville, GA,¬†starts with regular filter replacement, but that isn’t always enough. Speak with the experts in North Georgia at Gainesville Mechanical if you’d like to learn more about keeping your furnace in prime shape. (770) 532-9130

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