HVAC Filters: Types, Maintenance, and Replacement Tips You Need to Know

HVAC system - H & H Heating And Air Conditioning Inc. - EssingtonYour HVAC filter has a very important job. It traps dirt and all sorts of tiny particles to help improve your indoor air quality. In doing so, it also helps keep your home clean, extend the life of your HVAC equipment, reduce your need for HVAC system repair, and improve your energy-efficiency. If you change your filter on a regular basis, it should serve you well. However, there are a few more details about air filters that you may find it helpful to know.

Types of Filters

There are many types of air filters, each with their own pros and cons. Here are some of the most common types you’ll see:

Fiberglass

Fiberglass filters are the least expensive option. They capture large pieces of dust, pet hair, and lint quite well. However, they may let some smaller particles through. They’re disposable, and you should replace them often for best results.

Pleated Cotton

Pleated cotton filters cost a bit more than fiberglass filters, but they are still quite affordable. These filters are also disposable. They contain a thicker, woven media, which makes them more effective at trapping smaller particles like pollen granules and pet dander. If you or someone in your family has allergies, then you definitely want a pleated cotton filter over a fiberglass one.

Electrostatic Filters

Electrostatic air filters are thicker and more effective. They have charged fibers, which allow them to more effectively grab onto smaller particles. Some electrostatic filters are disposable, and others can be washed and reused. However, while reusable electrostatic filters can reduce waste, their cleaning process can be a bit more involved and might not be as effective as replacing disposable filters regularly.

Air Filter Maintenance and Replacement Tips

Replacing an air filter is fairly easy. Here are some tips to make it even simpler and more effective.

Schedule Annual HVAC Tune-Ups

During an annual HVAC tune-up, your technician will check the overall system performance, refrigerant levels (for AC), and other critical components. Your technician will also perform the necessary cleaning of the system that will help reduce the amount of debris that ends up in your filters. You can also ask your technician for filter recommendations during this visit. They can tell you which brands and models are likely to work best, considering your equipment and your unique needs.

Set a Reminder

Most people should change their filters every 2 – 3 months, as a general guideline. The actual frequency for changing filters can vary depending on factors such as whether or not you have pets, the type of filter, the level of pollutants, and specific manufacturer recommendations. Your tune-up technician can recommend your ideal frequency, based on which you can set a reminder on your phone to make sure you don’t forget.

Take a Filter With You To The Store

The easiest way to make sure you buy the right size filter is to take your used one with you to your store. If you still have trouble finding the right size, a store associate should be able to help.

With these tips, your air filter game should stay on-point! Don’t hesitate to contact H & H Heating & Air Conditioning if you have any other questions. Our residential HVAC contractors provide premium repair, maintenance, and installation services throughout the Delaware Valley.

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