It may be small, but your HVAC system’s air filter is a crucial element that can’t be overlooked. If you’re a home or commercial building owner, here’s what you need to know about changing the filter in HVAC systems in Altoona, PA.
Why you need to replace the filter
Many homes have central heat and air installations. Your installation may be a split or combination air conditioner/furnace/ventilation (HVAC) or a separate furnace or heat pump. No matter which type of system you have, it’s important to know that they all utilize air filters to prevent unhealthy airborne particles from entering your HVAC system.
When particles from the air collect in the system, the equipment can clog—a problem that typically starts with the air filter. A dirty filter can cause the pressure to drop throughout the HVAC system, leading to reduced airflow, followed by no air getting through at all.
This causes mechanical components in the system to have to work harder than normal to warm or cool the inside of your home. A system working overtime to run efficiently puts stress on the entire system. The results? Premature system failure that can lead to costly parts replacement or HVAC repair in Altoona, PA.
A dirty filter no longer traps airborne particles and when exposed to condensation, the dampness can give birth to mold growth. Mold can be dispersed all throughout your home, spreading through ductwork and other system components.
When to change HVAC air filters
Many manufacturers recommend changing the filter every 90 days. But, some say to change it every month, while others can last 6 to 12 months. Confused yet? A good rule of thumb to follow is if the filter is dirty, change it! You’ll know it’s dirty when you turn on the heater or cooler and the air smells unpleasant, the air is moist or too dry, or you visually inspect it and see that it’s clogged.
Keep in mind that the type of filter and how often it needs changing depends on the type of system you own.
Reasons to change right away
- Damaged: Never use a damaged filter; it will not work well. Damage can occur inside the packaging or during installation—look for holes, a bent frame or smashed cells.
- Damp and moldy: Condensation inside the system and indoor humidity can wet the air filter, which can quickly turn moldy. Mold spores are quick to become airborne and spewed throughout your home through the ventilation.
Reasons to change once a month
- High pollen and other allergens: Pet dander, household dust (especially if you have a large families), smoking indoors and living in a pollen heavy area are good reasons to change your filter every month. This will help your respiratory health and prevent serious HVAC troubles.
- Unhealthy outdoor air: Live near wildfires or construction work? If so, your filter will suck in an abnormal amount of smoke, dust and debris daily.
- Usage: Regular HVAC use means your filter will get dirty quicker. So, households that use their HVAC year-round should consider changing the filter once a month.
For the best HVAC service and duct cleaning in Altoona, PA, call Caporuscio Plumbing & Heating Inc. today!