The Dangers of Not Changing Your Air Filter

If you don't change the air filter in your air conditioner, you may be putting your health and your HVAC system at risk. Dust and contaminants can enter the air conditioner, clogging moving parts and restricting airflow. This can lead to immediate problems such as headaches, itchy eyes or throat, and dizziness. Long-term effects could include respiratory disease, heart disease, or cancer.

Replacing the air filter and having the HVAC system inspected regularly are part of a preventive maintenance routine that can help preserve the life of your system and make it work more efficiently. The Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) rating for an air filter measures how effectively the filter prevents dust and other contaminants from passing through the filter into the air stream. When air filters are not constantly changed, they become clogged by the accumulation of particles and contaminants that adhere to the filter. Some older models have air filters inside them and you may need to have the right tools to replace the filters. In general, most air filter manufacturers and HVAC companies recommend changing your air filter every 90 days or 3 months. The only type of filters that trap allergens and spores are HEPA, or high-energy particulate air filters.

If I see that the filter is not as clean as when I bought it, it's time to change it. You might start sneezing or coughing because the air filter is now clogged and causes your air conditioner to work harder and consume more energy. Personally, I always change my filters every 30 days and recommend the same to my customers: the EPA recommends at least inspecting their filter every month. Most of us have one-inch pleated filters that change in the return air filter grille on the ceiling or further down the wall if their ducts are under the house. Depending on the type of air filter you use, you will need to follow different programs to ensure that the filter is always working for optimal performance. Probably the biggest danger of not changing your oven's air conditioning filter is that it can damage your HVAC system and reduce its life expectancy.

And often, I notice that HVAC filters aren't even properly installed with missing filter caps and slots. Sometimes I see filters half bent in the center or other signs of having a low air seal around the filter frame. It's important to remember that changing your air filter regularly is essential for maintaining a healthy home environment and a well-functioning HVAC system. Not only will it help keep your family safe from potential health risks, but it will also help keep your energy bills low by ensuring that your system is running efficiently.