September 22, 2023
How Often Should You Replace Your Air Filters?
Have you ever paused to think about the air you breathe inside your home? Many homeowners often take their home’s air for granted because they assume it is always clean and pure for breathing. In reality, indoor air may be up to five times more polluted than outside air. The air inside your home could have particulates that can significantly impact your health and well-being. That is where air filters come into play. They act like small, silent guardians working tirelessly to ensure that the air you breathe is void of allergens and harmful pollutants.
Like any other filter, they have a limited lifespan and need regular replacement to ensure optimal function. They collect dust and other particles, which accumulate and impede their ability to trap more particulates. How often you should change these filters depends on their quality and usage. Experts recommend that the filters be replaced at least once every 90 days. Nevertheless, if you own pets or multiple people live in your home, it would be a good practice to swap them once every 60 days. The following are the real benefits of changing your air filters regularly.
1. Enhanced Air Quality
The cleanliness of your HVAC filter has a direct impact on the quality of air inside your home. The air filters primarily act as a barrier, capturing dust, pollen, pet dander, mold spores, and other particulates that may be circulating in the indoor air. If these particles accumulate over time, the air filter’s efficiency will be diminished, leading to poor air quality. Also, the trapped particles will begin to be released back into the indoor space. Poor indoor air quality may negatively affect your respiratory and skin health.
By replacing the air filters regularly, you are getting rid of the grime and germs trapped in the air filter, allowing the air to be cleaned more thoroughly as it passes through. If you are like most people, you probably spend about 90% of your time indoors, which makes quality indoor air a necessity.
2. Improved Energy Efficiency
Besides improving indoor air quality, air filters can also play a key role in the efficiency of your overall system. When the air filters become clogged or blocked by dust and debris, they impede airflow to your HVAC system. Such airflow restriction can lead to many negative consequences that can affect the efficiency of the system. Your HVAC unit works harder to push air through the system, increasing energy usage and bills. This increase in energy consumption can also lead to unnecessary wear and tear of your system, potentially leading to premature breakdowns and expensive repairs and replacements.
Moreover, the restricted airflow due to blocked air filters can reduce the overall success of your HVAC system in maintaining a cozy indoor environment. When your unit’s airflow is restricted, the system cannot evenly distribute conditioned air throughout your living space. The result is that some areas in your home will be cooler or hotter than others, which can translate to discomfort for occupants. Additionally, without proper airflow, your system will struggle to reach the desired temperature on your thermostat. Regular air filter replacement might pay for itself in the form of lower utility bills.
3. Lower Repair Frequency
The costs of frequently repairing an HVAC system can quickly add up and sometimes exceed that of purchasing a new system. Apart from regular maintenance, you can also prevent unnecessary damage to your unit by changing your air filters regularly. By preventing damage, you also save yourself from costly repairs. Some of the most common repair issues include high electric bills, bad odors, weird noises, and the failure of the system to maintain the correct temperature.
When you schedule regular system maintenance, your filters are changed as part of the maintenance package. Additionally, our professional team examines your system to capture any areas that may need repair before it breaks down. This practice is crucial in ensuring that more damage that can lead to more expensive repairs is avoided. Therefore, you must lower the frequency of your system repairs by practicing regular system maintenance.
4. Extended System Lifespan
Another major benefit of changing your air filters is that the lifespan of your unit will likely be extended. Replacing an entire unit might be costly, so you want to get the most out of your existing unit. To help extend the lifespan of your unit, you need to schedule regular HVAC maintenance, which includes regularly changing the air filters. When the air filters are dirty, your system works harder to push air through, meaning your system is exerting more effort than necessary. Take good care of your system to help extend its lifespan.
5. Improved Temperature Control
As with all the above benefits, your system performs optimally and produces just the ideal amount of conditioned air. Unobstructed airflow allows for proper condensation on the evaporator coils. This, in turn, helps maintain the right temperature and prevents the system from freezing up. The basic function of the evaporator coils is absorbing heat from the air and making it cool. Thus, insufficient airflow means that the coils cannot absorb the heat effectively, which leads to reduced cooling efficiency.
Inadequate airflow can also cause the moisture in the air to condense and freeze over the coils, leading to ice formation. This ice formation and buildup may restrict airflow even further and impede the ability of temperature control by your system. Replacing your air filters reduces the chances of your system malfunctioning. By combining high-quality air filters with a smart thermostat, you can have better control of the temperature in your indoor space.
Other than being familiar with how often you should replace your air filters, you should know the importance of it. The general recommendation is that you change it once every three months. However, other factors may change the effectiveness of this recommendation. Remember that if you own a pet or have any respiratory illnesses, you should change the filter at least once every 30 to 60 days. If you live alone and have no pets, you might wait up to six months to change the filter. Nevertheless, check your filter regularly to ensure it is always clean. If you notice that it gets clogged quickly, you will want to increase the frequency of replacing it.
Contact the Experts
If you have noted an increase in your energy bills, schedule an appointment with our Scott-Lee Heating Company experts. We inspect your system for any underlying problems that may cause future issues. Our services include HVAC repairs, maintenance, and installations. We know the importance of having a cozy indoor environment, and we do not keep you waiting when you call us. The extensive experience we have garnered over the years enables us to diagnose your system and leave everything working in order. We are here to assist if you also need indoor air quality solutions. We serve the residents of St. Louis and the surrounding areas. Give us a call today at Scott-Lee Heating Company and schedule an appointment.