Air filters remove the dust and debris from your home that would otherwise clog the air conditioning and heating system and potentially affect your respiratory health. We recommend changing your air filters every three months—or more, if you have hairy pets (even a hamster!). First, you need to choose the air filter that is right for your home and budget. Here are some tips on how to decide.
How to Purchase a Home Air Filter
The most effective filters are electronic air cleaner filters. These filters use a powered ionizing grid to charge microscopic airborne particles and attract them to plates in the airstream. They are extremely effective and come with the option to add charcoal odor removal panels.
Our second choice would be electrostatic filters. The movement of the air creates static electricity that attracts airborne particles and traps them in the poly webbing. These can be cleaned with a garden hose.
Coming in at third are the in-duct pleated filters. These filters are installed in the return duct at the furnace or air handler. They are available in 3”, 4”, and 6” thicknesses and generally are changed once a year. The initial installation requires a professional but the homeowner can change the filter as needed.
If you are looking for the best value for your money, we recommend pleated filters. If you go with this option, you need to check them every month and change them as needed.
Last place on our list goes to polyester filters. Try to avoid these filters if you can. They only catch big pieces of dust and debris and don’t do much for indoor air quality.
Do NOT run your system without a properly installed air filter! You will deposit airborne particles on the coil and mess up your air flow, run your bill up, and kill your AC!
Now that you have selected your filter, follow these simple steps to keep breathing easy (some filters will need to be installed or changed by a professional).
How to Replace Your Home Air Filter
1. Flip the latches to the opposite position to release the vent cover.
2. Open the vent cover and lay carefully on the floor (or let hang from the ceiling if working with an overhead vent).
3. Carefully grab the cardboard lattice of the filter to lift it out of the vent. Be sure to have a nearby trash bag to dispose the filter to avoid extraneous dust spread.
4. Insert the new filter by tucking one end into the vent first and gently pushing the other end into place.
Bonus tip: Write the date on the new filter to remind you when to replace it in a few months!
5. Close the vent and return the latches to the secure position.
Voila! Easy! Filters are just the “face” of your HVAC system—the outside layer of cleanliness. For duct cleaning (the deep-down scrubbing that you might not want to attempt), give us a call at 919-676-8882.