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Sometimes we’re asked what’s the number one thing that homeowner’s can do to ensure efficient functionality of their air conditioning and heating system between their seasonal maintenance? It’s a simple question with a simple answer; remember to change the heating and air conditioning air filter. Replacing furnace and return air filters is extremely important to the proper performance of your HVAC system, not to mention your home’s air quality. Research suggests that indoor air pollution is among the top five environmental health risks. You probably don’t consider it as you sit and watch TV, but this is the air you breathe every day and night. Changing the air filters is not a tough thing to do for most homeowners, but there are often two challenges found when completing this job:

  1. Knowing just how often to replace your furnace or air conditioner filter.
  2. Remembering to change air filters when needed.

When To Change Your Air Filters

The short answer is when they are dirty. Choosing how often to change your air filters depends on several factors:
  • The type of air filter you are using
  • The entire air quality of your home
  • Pets – Dogs, cats, etc.
  • The number of people in the home
  • How much construction is taking place in the neighbourhood around your home
For your standard 1″-3″ air filters, the manufacturer instructions generally tell you to replace every 2 months, which is really a great rule of thumb. But still, generalities may not be suitable for your specific needs. If you have to tolerate light to moderate allergies, you may need to upgrade the air filter or change them even more often than manufacturers instructions. On the other hand, if you’re in a less populated area and own a home that is not occupied often(like a vacation home) or an area where there are fewer cars around, changing your air filter every 12-months may be quite sufficient. Why should you factor in your pets? They have a tendency to shed, which can clog your air filter in no time, just like a vacuum. The air filter is doing its job by containing pet hair and dander, but dirty filters cause unnecessary stress on the system, decreasing HVAC performance.

In Summary:

  • Seldomly used home or single occupant homes without pets or allergies: Replace 6-12 months
  • Common suburban home without pets: Replace every 90 days
  • Homes with a dog or cat: Replace every 60 days
  • Several pets or allergies: Replace every 30-45 days

Changing Air Filters

Builders Choice Air Systems Ltd offers service and maintenance including seasonal tune-ups for your air conditioner and furnace.