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Changing The HVAC Filter: Whether Heat Pump or Furnace, Regularity Is A Must

Posted on: December 7th, 2012 by Jason Connell

If you have a furnace or heat pump, you need to understand how important changing the HVAC filter really is. Dirty air filters hinder airflow, which can significantly decrease the efficiency of your furnace or heat pump and cost you money. They also do a poor job of removing pollutants, compared to how they perform when they’re clean.

Reasons changing the HVAC filter is a must:

  • Fresh start – The Texas heat forces you to run your system constantly, which puts a lot of demand on your filters. It is important that you change your filters regularly, especially to give your system a fresh start as we head into winter.
  • Clean air – The fibers in a filter work by attracting and arresting passing particles. Fibers that are coated with dirt, dust and other pollutants are unable to attract the particles at the same rate, so the pollutants pass through and remain in your air.
  • Savings – Dirty filters block airflow and make your HVAC system work harder. This drives your energy bills up, increases the frequency of repairs and takes years off the life of your equipment.

Steps for changing the HVAC filter:

  • Find the right filter. Filters are rated by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) score, which ranges from 1-20. The cheap, one-inch filters from the local grocery store are typically rated below MERV-4. Most homes should opt for something between MERV-5 and MERV-11 because anything above 11 inhibits airflow and reduces efficiency.
  • Check the filter every month. You may not need to change it every month but you have to check to be sure. Set a reminder in your phone for the same day every month.
  • Change it promptly. When you notice dirt and dust, make the change right then. It helps to keep spare filters in the garage so you always have one available.
  • Insert it correctly. There should be an arrow in one corner. For maximum performance, make sure the arrow is facing you and is pointed toward the blower motor.

For more energy savings tips, contact AirRite. We’ve been serving the Fort Worth and Arlington area since 1955.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Fort Worth and Arlington, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about changing the filter and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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