How Often Should You Replace Your Air Filter?

Generally, most air filter manufacturers and HVAC companies recommend changing the air filter every 90 days or 3 months. This may vary depending on the location of your home, if you have pets, and the age of your system and equipment. The only way to be sure how often the air filter needs to be changed is to perform a visual inspection of the filter every month. After a few months, you'll get an idea of how quickly it gets dirty.

You'll need to re-evaluate if you're going to have a new pet or if the outside air quality has been poor. For basic air filters from 1 to 3, brands usually indicate that you replace them every 30 to 90 days. If someone in your family has mild to moderate allergies, you can put a better air filter on them or change it even more often. The basic consensus among HVAC professionals is that you should replace your furnace filter every 90 days or every three months.

However, that depends on the thickness of the filter. Thicker filters have more room to collect dirt and dust, so they don't need to be changed as often. Thomas & Galbraith Heating, Cooling and Plumbing of Ohio recommends replacing filters that are less than 2 inches thick every 30 to 90 days. Three- or 4-inch filters can last 6 to 9 months, and filters up to 6 inches thick can be replaced once a year. A general rule for pleated air filters (such as those manufactured by FilterBuy) is to change them every 90 days.

As the filter traps more dirt, dust and allergens from the air, the filter's efficiency decreases. Find out below if you should replace the filter more often. The ideal is to change your air filter every three months, however, there are certain factors to consider when determining when to replace an old filter. However, experts recommend changing it once every 30 days if the air filter is made of fiberglass filters, which are of relatively poor quality. On the other hand, expensive pleated filters can work well if replaced once every three to six months.

Replacing the air conditioning or heating system filter regularly makes the system work efficiently and, more importantly, maintains the air quality in your home. Pleated air filters are more expensive at first, but they are also more efficient at trapping particles and can last up to 90 days, depending on use. In addition to filtering particles filtered by MERV 8 and 11, MERV 13 can filter kitchen smoke, smog and virus carriers. For example, the presence of pets and people with allergies requires an air filter with a higher MERV rating to capture more particles. According to Bob Vila, the filters are designed to protect the oven from these particles and, in reality, improving air quality is just a beneficial side effect. If the dirty air filter is completely covered with dust and dirt, it's a good idea to replace it even if it hasn't reached the end of its recommended lifespan.

Air filters trap pet hair, dust, and other irritating particles so that the air conditioning system returns fresh, clean air to your home. To ensure that only clean air comes out of the HVAC system, replace the air filter before it becomes clogged so you can breathe better. If you have someone with asthma or allergies at home, change the filter every 6 weeks to make sure the indoor air quality is the best. Larger homes have large volumes of air circulating everywhere, which means that the filter may need to be changed more frequently. The HVAC air filter helps keep indoor air clean by trapping mold particles, pollen and other contaminants that move through the system.

While a filter with a higher MERV rating should last longer, it can also restrict airflow in your home. If an air filter is not replaced, the appliance will attract more particles from the surrounding air, leading to inefficiency.

Jenny Nordine
Jenny Nordine

Award-winning twitter scholar. Freelance sushi practitioner. Lifelong sushi practitioner. Incurable internet expert. Passionate bacon advocate.

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