Many homeowners have busy schedules, so they might forget to check their HVAC air filters from time to time. These air filters are very important, as they keep your indoors clean and healthy, especially if you have pets or someone in your household suffers from allergies.
With proper maintenance, your air filters can continue to function efficiently. In this article, AC & Refrigeration Works provides an overview of how to keep your air filters clean to ensure good indoor air quality.
How Often Should I Clean My Air Filters?
To ensure that your air filter is working as it should, it’s best to check it monthly. If you have a disposable filter, replace it as soon as it starts to clog. On the other hand, a washable air filter, made out of a metal or cloth material, can be cleaned, which means that you don’t have to replace it as often. It’s also suggested that it be washed once a month, as it will quickly collect dust and other particles.
Cleaning a washable air filter is very simple. After you remove the air filter, use a garden hose with good water pressure to spray it on both sides. If the filter is especially dirty, you may have to repeat this process several times. Just be careful not to use too much pressure, as this may damage the air filter. When you’re done cleaning it, wipe off the excess water. You can reinstall the filter if it’s a little damp, but it’s best to wait until it’s thoroughly dry to prevent mold. Once it’s dry, you can put it back in place and turn on your thermostat. To keep your indoor air free of toxic particles, remember to do this every month.
When Should I Replace My Air Filter
Most air conditioning companies would suggest that you should replace your air filter every three months. However, if you have any respiratory problems or allergies, you may need to change it more often than that. You might want to consider replacing your air filter if you notice any of the following signs:
It’s getting hotter. If you touch the back of the air conditioning unit and it’s too hot, you may need to replace the filter. Your AC unit is forced to work harder when the filter is clogged. This can also lead to an increase in your electricity bills or permanently damage your AC, requiring you to spend more money on repairs.
A dirty air filter will also prevent your air conditioner from cooling the room as it usually does. When the filter is clogged, it won’t allow cool air to pass through. If the filter isn’t the problem, however, you may need to schedule an air conditioning repair, as you might be experiencing underlying problems.
Allergies from dust accumulation. Another common indicator is dust on surfaces and furniture near the vents. You can also try doing the “white sheet test” to see how much dirt there is in your air filter. Hang a clean white sheet about five inches away from one of the vents for at least an hour. The dirtier the sheet becomes, the more likely it is that your filter needs to be replaced.
A dirty air filter may also cause allergy attacks. If you have pets, their fur will cling to the filter, along with other dirt and dust. When the filter gets too full, the fur will start circulating in the air throughout your home. Don’t wait until your health is compromised: be sure to replace your air filter as soon as you notice these signs.
If you have any questions about air filter maintenance, turn to AC & Refrigeration Works. Call us at (956) 255-7227 or fill out our contact form to set an appointment.