Taking care of your furnace can help quite a bit in the period in between furnace service appointments. One of the most basic, and essential, ways to maintain your furnace is in switching out your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter could contribute to a variety of negative concerns for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy costs are every month.
So what goes in to deciding 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 switched out every month and 3 inch filters should be replaced every three months, dependent on the recommendations of the filter maker.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it might make sense to change your filter more often because of pet dander. If someone in your family has allergies or asthma, contemplate switching out your home’s air filter more often to help with their symptoms.
Now you’re likely wondering how to change your furnace filter. More than likely, this will vary depending on what furnace you have, but normally:
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- Open or remove the air filter panel close to the bottom of your furnace to reveal an open compartment.
- On the top of that open compartment is where you will find your furnace filter resting on two metal supports.
- 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 remove it from the compartment.
- When adding the new filter, check the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to make sure you’re installing the filter in the correct direction. In most cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace.