Caring for your furnace can help more than you’d think in the time in between furnace service appointments. One of the most basic, and critical, ways to take care of your furnace lies in switching out your furnace filter. Having a filthy air filter could contribute to a variety of adverse concerns for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy costs are each 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 ought to be changed every three months, dependent on the recommendations of the filter maker.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to switch out your filter more often as a result of pet dander. If someone in your family suffers from 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. Inevitably this will change depending on what furnace you have, but normally:
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- Open or pull off the air filter panel near 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 pull down one end of the filter and pull it out of the compartment.
- When putting in the new filter, look at the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that specifies the air flow direction, to be sure you’re installing the filter in the right direction. In most cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace.