Changing your home air filters is an essential part of maintaining a healthy environment. Not only does it keep the air clean and free of allergens, but it also helps your system run more efficiently, saving you money on your energy bills. The frequency with which you should change your filters depends on a variety of factors, including the type of filter, the size of your home, and the number of people living in it. So how can you tell when it’s time to replace your filters? In this article, we’ll answer that question and more, giving you all the information you need to keep your home’s air quality at its best.
What type of filter do you have?
The first thing you need to know is what type of air filter you have. The most common types are pleated filters, activated carbon filters, and HEPA filters.
Pleated filters are made of a piece of fabric that is folded over itself multiple times to create a pleated effect. This type of filter is the most common and can be found in most homes. They come in different sizes depending on the make and model of your HVAC system. You can find any dimension you need in an online filter store or your local hardware shop. It traps large particles like dirt, dust, and pet hair, but it does not remove smaller particles or odors.
Activated carbon filters are made of activated carbon, a material that is very porous and absorbs toxins and odors. This type of filter is often used in smokers’ homes or in areas where there is a lot of smoke or pollution.
HEPA filters are the most effective type of filter for removing small particles and allergens from the air. They are made of high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) material, which is designed to capture 99.97% of all particles larger than 0.3 microns. HEPA filters are often used in hospitals and other areas where there is a high concentration of allergens.
What Size is Your Home?
The size of your home also affects how often you should change your air filters. The general rule of thumb is to change them every six months, but this can vary depending on the size of your home and the type of filter you have.
If your home is smaller than 1,500 square feet, you can likely get away with changing your pleated filters every three months. If your home is larger than 1,500 square feet, you should change them every six months. And if you have an activated carbon or HEPA filter, you should replace them every 12 months. The best way to keep track of when you need to change your filters is to write the date on the filter when you install it. That way, you can easily see when it’s time for a replacement.
How Many People Live in Your Home?
Another factor that determines how often you should change your air filters is the number of people living in your home. If there are more people in your home, the air will be dirtier and you will need to change your filters more often. If there are fewer people in your home, you can likely go longer between replacements.
Don’t forget to factor in pets! If you live with one or more pets, you will need to change your filters more often, as they will produce more pet hair and dander. Also, if there are any people in your home with allergies or asthma, you should change your filters more often, regardless of the number of people living there. HEPA filters are the best type of filter for people with allergies or asthma, so if you have one of those filters, you should replace it every six months instead of every 12 months.
What Type of Environment do You Live In?
The type of environment you live in also affects how often you should change your air filters. If you live in a rural area with little pollution, you can likely go longer between replacements. But if you live in an urban area with a lot of pollution or allergens in the air, you will need to change your filters more often.
The climate also plays a part in how often you should replace your air filters. If you live in a very humid climate, the air will be dirtier and you will need to change your filters more often. If you live in a dry climate, the air will be cleaner and you can go longer between replacements.
As you can see, many factors determine how often you should change your air filters. The best way to know exactly when you need to replace them is to consult your HVAC system’s manual or contact the manufacturer. But in general, you will be safe if you replace your pleated filters every 3 months, activated carbon filters every 12 months, and HEPA filters every 6 months. Changing your air filters regularly will help keep your home’s air clean and healthy, and it will also extend the life of your HVAC system, so make sure you don’t forget about it.