When it comes to keeping your home's air clean and healthy, one of the most important steps is to regularly replace your pleated air filter. Depending on the type of filter you have, the frequency of replacement can vary from every 30 days to every 12 months. Children are particularly sensitive to indoor air pollutants such as mold, dust mites, debris, dander and pollen, so it's essential to use quality air filters and change them before they become clogged and dirty. If you have young children at home, it's a good idea to use high-quality pleated air filters and switch them out as often as two months.
Different types of air conditioner or furnace filters have different specifications for when they need to be replaced. Fiberglass filters are cheaper but need to be replaced more often (usually every 30 days). Pleated air filters are more expensive but can last 3 to 6 months, depending on several factors. The general consensus is that you should replace your home air filter every 3 months or 90 days.
However, there are certain factors to consider when determining when to change an old filter. These include the size of your home, the type of filter you use, and the level of indoor air pollution. For milder to moderate allergies, residents will want to try to replace air filters every 30 days. After a period of smoky days with poor outdoor air quality, inspect the air filter to see if it needs to be changed.
After a deep home renovation, such as a drywall project, bits of drywall, dirt and dust can accumulate in the air ducts, restricting air flow through the air filters. A 2-fold air filter must be changed every 3 months. A 3-fold air filter must be changed every 120 days. A 4-fold air filter must be changed every 6 months.
An air filter with 5 or 6 folds should be replaced every 9-12 months. If you wait too long to change the filter, indoor air quality will suffer. Consider the factors listed above to determine a replacement program and decide what type and quality of filter you should use. Your HVAC air filter helps keep indoor air clean by trapping mold particles, pollen and other contaminants that move through the system. As outdoor dust or pollution increases, there is a greater need to replace indoor air filters on a more regular basis.
It's important to note that there are high-efficiency filters that are designed to filter out small particles of bacteria, mold and mildew, but standard MERV 8-11 filters will simply block larger particles of dust and dirt (26% of hair).Check your air filter today and change it if it's expired and enjoy fresh, clean air in your home. If there are any questions, residents can call a professional or the air filter manufacturer to determine the lifespan of the specific filter their system uses.