When did you last change the filter on our air conditioner or furnace? You can save money on heating and cooling bills if you change filters regularly. Regardless of the quality of your furnace filter (though that does help), filters will become clogged with dirt, dust, pollens and indoor allergens. When this happens, your furnace has to work harder to heat, so it will cost you more to operate it.
Changing furnace filters has a secondary benefit and for those with allergies, sinus or asthma, it may be more important to replace furnace filters for the sheer health benefit – reducing indoor allergens.
It’s not difficult at all to change furnace filters – they usually just slide in and out. But you do need to know the exact filter dimensions to get an appropriate replacement filter.
You can either just pull out the old filter, record the size and shop online for a replacement filter, or take the old furnace filter with you when you shop. Furnace filters are sold at most hardware or home renovation centers.
If reducing allergens is important for you, replace your furnace filter with one that has multiple layers to trap minute dust and allergen particles. You’ll pay slightly more, but it’s worth the added cost for the health benefits. These will still need to be replaced regularly.
How often should you change your furnace filter? It really depends on your indoor air quality. At the minimum, change it at the start of your heating season – at best, every couple of months if you want to improve your indoor air quality and heating furnace efficiency.
If you have pets, you should change your furnace filter more often because they will clog up more quickly. A quick visual check of your furnace filter should confirm that it needs changing.
Furnace filters are very economical. They’re often sold in multiple packs for a further budget saving and it’s nice to have one on hand when you need it. Some filters are washable, but this is a chore that’s time-consuming. If you buy in multiples, you can save money and avoid this nasty task.