So what’s the big deal with changing furnace filters? Well, there are actually a lot of good reasons to do it. And frequently.
Basically furnace filters are designed to purify the air in your home and trap the dust that circulates through your central air system. Its whole purpose is to catch particles of dust and dirt so they don’t gunk up your furnace fan or damage the heating coil. And since all the air you breathe in your home circulates through your HVAC system at some point, your furnace filter is your first line of defense against allergens like bacteria, pollen, mildew, and mold.
On the flipside, not changing your filter can lead to issues like allergies and a dustier house. Your filter is a huge component in how efficiently your air conditioning and heating runs, so not changing your filter and letting the dust bunnies run rampant will actually raise your utility bills over time. Plus it will shorten the lifespan of your furnace. Yikes.
So change that thing! A lot of people think changing the filter once every three months is good enough, but in reality, you should be checking your filter every month. If you pull the filter out and you can’t see any light through it, it needs changing. You may not need to replace your filter every single month, but factors like furry pets in the house or a family member that smokes could dirty up your filter much quicker than you’d think.
To help you out, here’s a quick video on exactly how to change your filter:
Take note that the location of your filter will depend on your house. Some older homes have filters in the wall or the ceiling instead of near the floor, but no matter where yours is, make sure that you’re installing it the right way with the arrow on the filter pointing toward the blower motor. For more in-depth instructions on changing a filter, check out this step-by-step tutorial from consumerreports.org. Good luck!