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Furnace filter guide — CNET


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Homeownership comes with what looks like a unending to-do checklist. One necessary job on that checklist is making certain your heating and cooling system is correctly maintained. You have to be changing your furnace’s air filter regularly to maintain your HVAC system working correctly and guarantee your loved ones has good air high quality in your house. Hold studying to learn the way furnace filters work, how typically you must change yours, what kind of filter to get and extra.

Learn extra: Furnace shopping for information: Discover one of the best furnace in your dwelling

How furnace filters work

Earlier than we discuss changing your furnace filter, let’s discuss concerning the objective these filters serve and the way they work. The job of a furnace filter is to lure contaminants from escaping via your dwelling’s heating and cooling system.

There are two causes it is necessary to filter out these contaminants. First, a superb furnace filter will preserve the air in your house cleaner by trapping any airborne contaminants. That is particularly necessary for anybody with allergy symptoms or bronchial asthma, because the filter helps take away pollen, mud and different allergens.

The opposite motive the filter exists is to guard your HVAC system. With no filter, filth and different particles can accumulate in your heating and cooling system, affecting your vitality invoice and requiring you to exchange your HVAC system sooner.

How typically to exchange a furnace filter

As you’ll be able to inform, your furnace filter serves an necessary job in your house. Consequently, it is necessary to exchange it regularly to make sure it could actually proceed to do its job nicely.

So how typically do you have to change your air filter? That is dependent upon just a few components. First, how typically you change your filter is dependent upon the thickness of your air filter. Most filters ought to be changed each three months. For thicker filters, you could possibly lengthen that by a number of months. In case you aren’t positive, test the producer’s advice for the precise filter you have bought.

However the thickness of your air filter is not the one issue to contemplate. For instance, you probably have somebody in your house with allergy symptoms or bronchial asthma who requires higher indoor air high quality, you might need to change your filter extra typically. 

Moreover, you probably have pets at dwelling creating fur or dander, or a big household to herald extra contaminants, you may additionally want to change your filter extra typically. Then again, if the house is primarily a trip dwelling that is not used typically, you could possibly lengthen the period of time earlier than you change the filter.

Discovering the proper filter in your furnace

Once you change your air filter, it is necessary that you simply discover the proper filter in your dwelling. Not all filters are created equally, and your heating and cooling system might require a sure kind.

First, you should definitely purchase the proper measurement filter in your HVAC system. Frequent filter sizes are 16×20, 16×25 or 20×25 inches. You may test the filter you presently should see what measurement it’s.

Along with selecting the best measurement, you may additionally should determine what kind of filter you need. There are a number of differing kinds, every of which has totally different benefits. The commonest kind of filter is fiberglass — such a filter is commonly about an inch thick and catches massive contaminants. It is probably not adequate you probably have somebody in your house with bronchial asthma or allergy symptoms, since it could actually fail to lure smaller contaminants.

Different kinds of filters embody:

  • Disposable pleated: Such a filter is made from cotton or polyester, is ready to catch small particles, and is essentially the most inexpensive. Such a filter ought to be modified extra typically.
  • Disposable electrostatic: Fabricated from self-charging electrostatic paper or cotton fibers, such a filter can lure small dangerous particles. Such a filter is barely costlier than the disposable pleated however inexpensive than a few of the increased high quality filters beneath.
  • Everlasting electrostatic: Such a filter is much like the disposable electrostatic one, however is everlasting. You may take away it and clear it, and even wash it within the washer. They’re costlier however do not should be changed, saving you cash in the long term.
  • Excessive-efficiency pleated: Such a filter is thicker than many others, typically as much as 4 or 5 inches. Such a filter can lure the smallest particles, creating one of the best air high quality. Such a filter is costlier and cannot be used with all filters.

The way to change a furnace filter

Now that we have talked about how typically to exchange your air filter and what kind to get, let’s discuss the way to go about changing your filter. Here is a simple step-by-step information to changing your air filter:

1. Flip off your furnace. 

2. Find your filter compartment and take away the door or service panel.

3. Slide the outdated filter out.

4. Slide the brand new filter in.

5. Flip your furnace again on.

The underside line

Your furnace’s air filter is a vital a part of making certain you’ve gotten good air high quality in your house and lengthening the lifetime of your HVAC system. They’re simple to exchange, however it’s essential that you simply change them regularly and purchase the proper kind of filter in your furnace. In case you have questions on your furnace or aren’t positive the place to start out with changing your filter, you should definitely contact a professional skilled for assist.

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