If you’ve read any of our other blog posts, then you know we emphasize the importance of HVAC maintenance. Regular maintenance sessions ensure that your cooling and heating system perform as efficiently and effectively as possible throughout their lifespan. This service is required for a heating or cooling system every year. If you have a year-round heat pump system, you should schedule bi-annual tune-ups. This type of maintenance should only be performed by a professional HVAC contractor in Parker, CO. However, there is at least one small maintenance task that you can, and should, be doing on your own. That’s changing your air filter. You may be wondering if that’s really necessary, but we urge you to consider what will happen if you don’t.
You’ll Find Yourself Paying Too Much in Cooling Costs This Summer
First, it’s important that we point out your air filter is not there to protect your indoor air quality, but rather the inside components of your air conditioner. And chances are with the heat and humidity of summer, you want to keep your air conditioner in good condition so you don’t have to pay more than necessary to feel comfortable! Cooling your home will always come at a cost, but it shouldn’t hurt your wallet just because you haven’t changed the filter.
Leaving an air filter in the cooling system longer than it should be there causes airflow restriction, and therefore makes your air conditioner struggle to provide your home with conditioned air. This results in the system expending too much energy—way more than it otherwise would—which will eventually be reflected on your utility bills.
Your AC System Will Accumulate Unnecessary Wear and Tear
The harder your air conditioner has to work just to its job, the more wear and tear your system will develop. Of course, your cooling system is going to suffer some general wear and tear over the course of summer.
However, forcing it the work harder than necessary by leaving a dirty air filter in place will exponentially increase this wear and tear. This could also lead to an increased risk of damages, and a shortened system lifespan.
You’ll Lose Out on Comfort
When the air filter in your AC system is too dirty and clogged, it can cause the air conditioner to overheat, leading to short-cycling. Short-cycling is the process that describes an HVAC system turning on and shutting off too rapidly, too frequently. Which this occurs, your air conditioner will struggle to do its job.
You’ll likely also notice that your air quality is dropping, as air travels through gaps between the filter and its frame, rather than the clogged up filter media. To avoid overexerting your system while paying more for less comfort, be sure to stay on top of changing your air filter as needed—typically every 1-3 months during periods of use.
The timing will depend on the type of air filter that is in your system, as well as the level of contaminants in your home. For instance, a home that has significant pet dander and/or the presence of cigarette smoke and similar fumes may need an air filter to be changed once a month versus once every 3 months.