Maintaining your furnace can help quite a bit in the months in between furnace service appointments. One of the simplest, and critical, ways to care for your furnace lies in changing your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter could contribute to a host of adverse concerns for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy expenses are each month.
So what goes in to determining when you should replace your furnace filter?
- Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters typically need to be replaced every month and 3 inch filters need to be changed every three months, based on the recommendations of the filter manufacturer.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it might make sense to switch out your filter more often as a result of pet dander. If you have someone in the house that deals with allergies or asthma, consider switching out your home’s air filter more regularly to help with their symptoms.
Now you’re possibly wondering how to swap out your furnace filter. More than likely, this will change depending on what furnace you have, but normally:
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- Open or pull off the air filter panel around the bottom of your furnace to uncover an open compartment.
- On the top of that open compartment is where you will find your furnace filter resting on two metal brackets.
- There will be a bit of space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to bring down one end of the filter and take it out of the compartment.
- When adding the new filter, check the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to ensure you’re installing the filter in the correct direction. In nearly all cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace.