Taking care of your furnace can go a long way in the months in between furnace service appointments. One of the simplest, and crucial, ways to maintain your furnace is in changing your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter may contribute to a host of negative issues for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much you’re spending on your energy bills each month.
So what goes in to determining 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 typically need to be switched out every month and 3 inch filters ought to be changed every three months, depending on the recommendations of the filter company.
- Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to change your filter more often due to pet dander. If a family member deals with 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 change depending on what furnace you have, but typically:
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- Open or take off the air filter panel around the bottom of your furnace to reveal an open compartment.
- On the top of that open compartment is where you’ll see your furnace filter 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 installing the new filter, look at the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to be sure you’re installing the filter in the right direction. In the majority of cases, the arrow should point towards the main part (or top) of the furnace.