Why You NEED to Replace Furnace Filters
June 15, 2022Back to All Articles
You probably don’t give much thought to your furnace’s filter. But when you do think about it, what comes to mind?
If you’re like most of us, you assume that the filter’s main job is to keep the air we breathe clean. Yes, that is a great benefit of your furnace’s filter, but it’s not quite the reason.
The main purpose they serve is to protect your FURNACE from harmful pollutants.
A filter will guard your furnace’s fan from dust and other air pollutants.
It’s important to know what type of air filter your furnace uses so that you can know how often it needs to be replaced. Here are some different types:
- Fiberglass/Synthetic Filters
- Polyester Filters
- Electrostatic Filters
- Pleated Filters
- High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) Filters
Typically, most of the above furnace filters need to be replaced every 3-12 months.
So, what happens if you DON’T replace your furnace filter? Let us tell you.
This is the absolute most important reason you should change your furnace filter: Safety.
Airflow is needed for your furnace to function properly, and the filter’s job is to make sure it doesn’t get clogged up with all the gunk floating in the air. However, if a filter gets severely blocked by enough debris, it’s no longer doing its job of allowing clean air to flow.
Without proper airflow, the motor in your furnace could overheat and become a fire hazard. An overheated motor is our primary concern when we see overly dirty filters.
Less likely, but still possible, is that your furnace filter gets sucked INTO your furnace because the motor is working harder due to the blockage. That’s going to cause all kinds of system problems, and your furnace will likely shut down.
Damage to Your Furnace
A house fire is a worst-case scenario and the most important reason you should change your filter regularly, but it’s not the only good reason.
The more clogged your filter is, the harder your furnace must work. Your furnace has a “limit switch” that will shut the furnace down whenever it’s in danger of overheating. But what happens when the furnace restarts over and over again, and continues to overheat with each start? Well, that’s called short cycling, and it can seriously reduce the lifespan of your furnace.
You probably don’t need us to tell you that furnace repairs or replacement can cost you thousands of dollars.
A simple way to save money is to replace your furnace’s filter regularly.
Discomfort & Poor Air Quality
If you have a dirty air filter, this is probably going to be the problem you notice.
A clogged air filter means your furnace can’t do its job properly, so your climate will be less controlled. Homes will often have cold & hot spots when you’ve let your filter go too long without a change.
It’s a pretty good tip-off when people start fighting over the thermostat.
The gross part is that all those contaminants that are circulating in the air won’t be efficiently trapped by your filter. If your home feels dustier or you’re having a harder time breathing, ask yourself when the last time was that you changed your furnace filter.
So, what does this mean?
The good news is that all of this is preventable by regularly swapping out your furnace filter. Follow your furnace manufacturer’s advice on how often to change your filter. There is no hard & fast rule for all filters, so you will need to find out what kind of filter your furnace uses.
If you’re having problems with your furnace or its filter, we want to help.