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How to Change Your HVAC System’s Air Filter

If you use a furnace or a heat pump to provide warmth to your home during the winter, it has an air filter on it that needs some special attention over the season. This filter isn’t designed to clean the air (we have plenty of options to help your home with air quality if you need help with that). What it does is protect the interior of the heater from the debris that flows in through the return air ducts. Over the winter months, a great deal of dust, lint, dander, and other particles will become trapped in the filter. The congestion will reach the point where the filter will no longer be able to “breathe” and this can cause multiple problems:

  • It lowers the energy efficiency of the heater as it forces it to strain more to draw in air.
  • It can lead to dust and other contaminants escaping around the edges of the filter as it distorts.
  • The drop in airflow will lead to a drop in comfort.

You need to change the filter on a regular basis—every 1 to 3 months depending on the type of filter. We recommend checking monthly to see the level of clogging; you’ll soon get a sense of how often to change the filter for a new one. Here’s how to do it.

  • First, locate the filter. This is a bit harder than it sounds, since the filter can be in a number of different spots. The best place to look is where the return air duct connects to the blower in the heater’s cabinet. But it might also be behind the grill of the return air vent in the house.
  • Slide the filter out from its slot.
  • Have a new filter ready to go—they’re inexpensive to buy at a home supply store. Write the date with a marker on the edge of the filter that will face outward. That way you’ll always know when the most recent filter was put in.
  • Slide the new filter into place and make sure it’s in there firmly; a loose filter can allow particles to escape around it.

That’s all there is to it! If you need any assistance, you can give our team a call. We provide air filter changes as a part of regular maintenance through our HomesSavers Club.

Collier’s Heating & Air Conditioning is a company you’ve grown to trust with the best in home comfort in Fort Wayne, IN. Right now we’re running a special for UV Germicidal lights that expires November 30. Call for more details.

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