It is best to check with your HVAC professional or review the documentation that came with your furnace to determine how often your filter should be changed. Recommendations will depend on several factors, including:
The type of filter that you use. Disposable fiberglass panel or electrostatic panel filters should be changed every one to three months. Higher quality pleated filters can last anywhere from three to six months while High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, which meet certain efficiency standards set by the United States Department of Energy, can often last longer.
Whether anyone living in your home has allergies. A cleaner filter can help alleviate allergy symptoms by removing more dust, pollen, bacteria and mold than an older, dirtier filter. (See our blog post “Achoo! The Truth about Allergens and Your HVAC System”)
How many pets you have. Pet dander is also more efficiently removed from the air when your furnace filter is cleaner. The more pets you have, the more frequently the filter should be changed to improve the quality of the air flowing through your home.
If you use a residential air filter gauge. The indicator needle on the gauge tells you when the filter needs to be changed by sensing the air pressure between the air filter and the blower. GeneralAire makes a great model (G99) for residential use.
A clean filter will also improve the efficiency of your furnace by preventing airborne particles from building up in the fan and heating coil. When the filter is dirty, your furnace has to work harder to pull air through the intake. Regular filter changes can save you money by helping your HVAC system run more efficiently and last longer.
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