We’ve talked about the importance of changing your HVAC systems air filters, but why is it so important? Not only does it affect your indoor air quality, but clogged, dirty air filters are also the main cause of heating and cooling system problems. If left untouched, the buildup of dust and debris caught in a home air filter restricts air flow. This, in turn, forces your furnace to work harder and use more energy to cool or heat your home. In the same way your car engine’s oil and air filter should be changed every 3,000 miles to protect your car’s mechanical parts, a clean filter protects your HVAC system from damage and, ultimately, failing entirely.
It may be hard to believe that a $14-$30 filter can protect a $3,000+ HVAC system, but it’s true. To understand how, there are a few things to learn about first: 1. how your home is heated and cooled and 2. how clogged air filters prevent your HVAC system from efficiently operating.
How HVAC Systems Work
The most common heating and cooling system uses a forced-air system which uses a heat exchange to heat or cool the air coming into the system which that is then blown out through the air ducts to the various rooms in your house. As the (cooled or warmed) air flows through your home, the fan in the return unit pulls the existing air out of the rooms through the “return” ducts. The air is then pushed toward the heat exchange (where it is again cooled or heated) and the circular cycle continues until the selected temperature is reached.
What Happens When an Air Filter Is Clogged?
When an air filter is clogged, the air handler must work harder to compensate for the air flow being blocked. This not only increases your energy consumption and ups your utility bill, but it can also cause the heat exchanger to overheat and shut off prematurely. If this continues to happen, there is an electronic “limit switch” safeguard in place that will fail causing the furnace not to fire up at all leading to a costly repair.
Clogged Air Filters Cause:
- Increased Energy Consumption:
HVACs rely on constant air recirculation so the system’s blower fan can have a significant impact on home energy consumption. The harder the fan has to work, the higher your energy bills become. According to the Department of Energy, clogged filters can use up to 15% more energy. As the air filter becomes more and more clogged, the inefficiency increases rapidly until the filter is changed.
- Frozen Evaporator Coils:
During the hot weather when you’re cooling your home, a clogged air filter can cause the evaporator or cooling coil to freeze. This happens because there is not enough air moving past the coil to evaporate the condensation that is produced during the cooling process. The lack of airflow causes the condensation to freeze therefore reducing the unit’s ability to remove the heat from the air and cool your home and eventually causes your AC to break down.
- Inadequate Heating/Cooling:
The blower fans within an HVAC system push the air through the filter. If the filter is clogged, the blower has to work harder to pass the air through the clogged filter. This results in hot and cool spots throughout the home and the inability to reach the desired temperature levels. The reduction in air flow also means the HVAC system will run longer and work harder to heat or cool the air, increasing energy consumption.
- Unhealthy Air:
Clogged air filters allow all the dust and debris that would normally be filtered out to be re-circulated back into the home. This can result in chronic allergies and is especially dangerous for those who suffer from asthma and/or other respiratory conditions. Add pets and indoor air pollution in from cooking, burning candles, etc., your indoor air quality (IAQ) gets even worse. Overtime, poor indoor air quality can have very negative effects on your health.
- Furnace Failure:
Clogged air filters can cause a heater to stop working all together – the costliest of repairs. The overworked air blower mentioned in #3 above can break down entirely which causes the whole system to fail and leads to a repair that can cost you thousands of dollars.
US Home Filter Carries AC Filters to Fit All HVAC Units
No matter which HVAC system you have, every unit needs a quality filter that fits properly to keep your indoor air quality clean and your heat running at its maximum efficiency this Fall and Winter. US Home Filter can supply you with the best and most efficient HVAC filter available! Changing the filter is as important as changing the oil in your car and US Home Filter makes filters that fit all AC/HVAC units. From standard to custom air filters, to whole-house filters, grille filters and humidifier filters, we have all of your filter needs covered!
Order now from US Home Filter and receive FREE SHIPPING on your order!
Selecting the filters that are right for your home can be difficult and confusing at times. At US Home Filter we understand this, which is why we offer an experienced staff to help answer any questions you may have. For personal assistance with your air filter needs, please contact us now online or call us at (855) 237-1673 and we will do our very best to assist you in selecting the right filter for your individual needs. We want to earn your business and we guarantee your satisfaction! Take advantage of our quality products, vast selection, low prices, and enjoy FREE SHIPPING on every air filter order within the Contiguous USA.