Caring for your furnace can go a long way in the period in between furnace service appointments. One of the most basic, and crucial, ways to maintain your furnace is in switching out your furnace filter. Having a filthy air filter can contribute to a variety of unfavorable problems for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy costs are month after month.
So what goes in to consideration 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 usually need to be replaced every month and 3 inch filters should be replaced every three months, based on the recommendations of the filter maker.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to replace your filter more often due to pet dander. If a family member has allergies or asthma, think about changing your home’s air filter more regularly to help with their symptoms.
Now you’re possibly wondering how to replace your furnace filter. Obviously this will vary depending on what furnace you have, but normally:
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- Open or take off the air filter panel around the bottom of your furnace to reveal an open compartment.
- On the top of that open compartment is where your furnace filter is resting on two metal brackets.
- There will be a little 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, inspect the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that specifies the air flow direction, to ensure you’re installing the filter in the right direction. In the majority of cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace.