Although it seems obvious to homeowners that there are benefits to regularly changing the heating and air-conditioning filters; creating a system to make sure it gets done is the real challenge.
Replacing it every 60-90 days with a new one-inch pleated filter would be a reasonable schedule. If your household has a shedding pet, you might consider replacement every month. Some homeowners with homes for sale in Northern Virginia replace their filters when they pay the electric bill. For a simple system, set a recurring appointment on your Google calendar or in Outlook.
Directly affecting your air quality and your allergies are dust, mold and bacteria which filters trap. When your filter becomes dirty, proper airflow is prevented and dust, dirt and allergens are allowed to blow through your home. Unexpected maintenance and equipment issues can be lessened by replacing your filter regularly. This also improves equipment life span and gets you increased energy savings.
As homeowners with homes for sale in Northern Virginia as we shop for filters, we may tend to look for the best bargains, but the best choice may not be the cheapest filter. Before you buy, know that HEPA-type and HEPA-rated filters are not the same thing. HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air. With efficiency standards set by the U.S. Department of Energy, a HEPA filter will meet or exceed their requirements. Your HVAC contractor will probably recommend a HEPA replacement filter. If you are looking to upgrade to a HEPA filter, think about hiring a contractor to clean your duct work. Starting with clean ducts will increase not only the efficiency of your system but your overall home air quality.
Whether you change your filter monthly or every three months, read your manufacturer recommendations before you buy. As an alternative, you can buy a permanent washable type filter. However, these will cost more initially. As you wash and re-use them, you will eventually recapture the cost of the filter and realize future savings.
No matter which direction you take, regular replacement of any heating and air-conditioning filter in your home will make your air quality better. Breathe easy knowing you are doing your part for a healthy family.