Maintaining your furnace can go a long way in the months in between furnace service appointments. One of the easiest, and critical, ways to care for your furnace is by replacing your furnace filter. Having a dirty air filter may contribute to a host of negative concerns for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy expenses are month after month.
So what goes in to determining when you should change your furnace filter?
- Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters usually need to be replaced every month and 3 inch filters ought to be swapped out every three months, dependent on the recommendations of the filter company.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to change your filter more often because of pet dander. If someone in your family suffers from allergies or asthma, think about replacing your home’s air filter more often to help potentially decrease their symptoms.
Now you’re possibly wondering how to change your furnace filter. Obviously this will change depending on what furnace you have, but typically:
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- Open or take off the air filter panel near the bottom of your furnace to expose 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 small amount of space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to remove one end of the filter and take it out of the compartment.
- When installing 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 towards the main part (or top) of the furnace.