Having quality, clean air to breathe is crucial for good health. That is why keeping your HVAC filters clean is so important.In this article we'll talk about the role HVAC filters play and the other kinds of routine maintenance you can do to get the most out of your HVAC system. When you've finished reading you'll have a better understanding of why HVAC filters are more than an investment in your furnace, they're an investment in your health.
What HVAC Filters Do
HVAC filters keep dust and allergens from circulating in your home. According to the EPA indoor air can be up to 5 times as polluted as outdoor air! If you suffer from allergies, this can be a significant issue. A filter is installed in such a way that the air that is blown through the ducts and into the home first passes through the filter. The filter traps larger particles like pet hair and also smaller particles like dust and other contaminants. Depending on the type of filter you buy, you can reduce over 97% of allergens found in your home.
Types of HVAC Filters
There are a wide variety of types. The important thing to remember about HVAC filters is that it's not so much the type of filter, but the frequency with which you change it. An inexpensive filter left in your system for an extended period of time can actually cause equipment breakdowns. When filters become too dirty the furnace has to work harder and harder to push air through a filter that is clogged. Over time the furnace will simply give out.When you let your filters become dirty you also decrease the quality of air circulating in your home.
As with most things, you get what you pay for with HVAC filters so don't be tempted to buy the cheapest filter on the market. You may end up spending more on HVAC system repairs instead. If you're very concerned about the air quality in your home, investigate some of the HEPA HVAC air filters on the market as they are the most effective at reducing household allergens.
In addition to changing your filters often, it's a good idea to have an HVAC installation specialist come out to the house on an annual basis for a whole system maintenance. Just like an annual physical, a local HVAC professional can go through the major components and diagnose and repair any issues. While it may not seem like an important thing to do, regular maintenance can substantially increase the life of your HVAC system. Additionally, well maintained systems operate more efficiently which can save you up to 10% on annual fuel costs. These maintenance calls can also be a great time to ask any questions you have about your thermostat, the efficiency of the system or any other concerns you've had about your system over the past year.
In addition to having an annual check on your system, you may want to combine it with having your ducts cleaned. If you're concerned about clean air, an annual duct cleaning is a good idea.