Tips to Keep Your HVAC Filters Running Healthy and Happy

Hvac contractors

Your heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system is very important for the comfort of your home. If you properly maintain yours, it can last between 12 and 15 years. Proper maintenance of your HVAC filters is a big part of any good HVAC maintenance plan.

The first thing you need to look into when you are working on HVAC filters is to find out what kind works best with your unit and what will be needed by your home. The measurement that is used for HVAC filters is the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV).

Understanding MERV:

If you need only the minimal amount of filtration you want to get the MERV 1 through 4. These keep dust from getting into the equipment. They do not do much to improve the quality of the air you breathe. These are the cheapest HVAC filters on the market.

The next step up is the MERV 8 through 8.These are traditionally used in many homes and will get smaller allergens and dust to make the air in the home a better quality. This is the kind that used in most homes today.

The next level go from MERV 9 through 12. If anyone who lives in the home has severe allergies or if you have a lot of animals in the home, this may be better for you. These often do require a contractor to make some adjustments to the HVAC as these HVAC filters really cut down on the air flow in the home.

Hospitals, smoking places and some commercial buildings use MERV 13 through 16. This is often a lot more than a standard households in the United States.

Then you have the High Efficiency Particulate Absorption (HEPA) filter or MERV 17 to 20. These are not used in residential homes but are used in vacuum cleaners.

Next you need to look at your home and what you need. The standard line on HVAC filters is that for residential buildings, the HVAC filters need to be changed every one to three months.

How often are you in the home? If the house in question is a vacation property, there is one person living in it and there are no animals, you can wait between three and six months. For typical households throughout the American suburbia, they should be changed every three months. If there is a one animal such as a cat or a god, that needs to happen every two months. This time period shortens further when you add more animals. Two or more cats or dogs mean you need to change HVAC filters every month to month and a half. The same time frame works for homes where there is anyone living with bad allergies or other respiratory problems. People who live in areas with more pollution or a lot of construction may want to change their HVAC filters more often.

It never hurts to check your HVAC filters more often and change it as needed. Many people check their HVAC filters once a month.

Most homeowners do not spend a lot of time thinking about their heating and air conditioning systems. They just want their homes to be warm in the winter and cool in the summer. HVAC repair and maintenance only comes to mind when there is a problem. HVAC systems need more love than that to operate correctly. One thing many people do is set a reminder to check and change their HVAC systems once a month. It is easy to set this on your phone or put in your calendar. Then you do not have to worry about, “did I check the HVAC filters?”

Another problem is that people do not always realize the fire risk that can be caused by clogged HVAC filters. This can be very dangerous.

Your HVAC system will also run a lot more efficiently when you make it a point to change the HVAC filters regularly. When they are allowed to get clogged, the systems have to work a lot harder to get the job done. This means that your energy bills will be higher.

If you take care of your HVAC system, it will keep you and your family comfortable in your home for a long, long time.

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