Under the scorching adversity of summer, you need all the cool air you can get. Without an adequate breeze flowing through your home, forget about staying cool and comfy as summer continues to bite. It gets even worse in the wake of seasonal heat waves that make comfortable living increasingly elusive.
That’s why a top-performing cooling system should be your closest companion right now. Whether for your living room or for your commercial space, a formidable air conditioner will effortlessly withstand all the summer punishment and leave you safe, healthy, comfortable, and productive all day long.
With that in mind, comfortable indoor living is more than just seamless cooling; it is also a matter of quality airflow. Even if you consistently receive a refreshing dose of cool air from your air conditioner, it does not count if the air is marred with potentially harmful airborne particles. That’s where a reliable AC filter comes in.
Why Should I Replace My AC Filter?
To keep your air conditioner in peak performance during the discomforting summer heat, regular AC maintenance is imperative. In fact, to keep the cooling system effective and efficient throughout its useful life, the U.S. Department of Energy puts extra emphasis on quality AC maintenance.
A crucial component of that regular maintenance is the AC filter or air filter. The U.S. Department of Energy terms routine air filter maintenance as the “most important maintenance task” to guarantee the efficiency of your air conditioner. According to the government agency, AC filter maintenance has a lot to do with the routine cleaning and replacing of your filters.
Frequently cleaning and replacing your AC filter becomes a necessary maintenance practice because the filter is highly prone to dirt and clogging.
When it is unusually hot outside, your cooling system is forced to run more frequently than usual. That means the AC filter has to process more air per unit time, causing the filter to accumulate dirt faster and maybe even getting clogged.
If this happens, the filter may begin to restrict airflow and consequently render your cooling system ineffective and inefficient. Ultimately, an inefficient air conditioner may spell doom in terms of health risks, safety risks, and higher energy bills. Who wants another trail of inconveniences when the summer scorch is already unbearable?
With that in mind, while your AC filter is bound to get dirty over time, sometimes the dirt escalates into restrictive clogs faster than usual. The reasons for that may vary and affect the frequency of filter cleaning and replacement.
What Are the Benefits of AC Filter Replacement?
As earlier noted, air filter replacement is a key part of AC maintenance. In other words, whereas some filters are reusable once properly cleaned, others must be replaced.
That said, the types of filters available come in different varieties and efficiencies. Thus, you should strive to know what you are after in your AC; is it performance or efficiency or both?
As you ponder over that, the benefits of AC filter replacement are worth every effort and penny. The first gain you reap is peak AC performance during those overly demanding summer months. Air filter replacement means eliminating all the dirt and debris obstructing seamless airflow to your cooling unit.
As you remove the obstruction, your unit’s workload reduces to optimum levels, allowing it to deliver its best performance. In effect, optimized AC operation translates to free air movement for enhanced indoor comfort.
Regular AC filter replacement also reduces your system’s wear and tear by keeping your air conditioner clean. The truth is that, if you run your AC without air filter replacement, the filter starts aging and slowly deteriorating. It may then start releasing debris and fibers into the moving parts of your cooling system.
In turn, the AC may start to experience occasional breakdowns and ruin your indoor comfort. Thus, keeping the air filter clean or replacing it when necessary helps you avoid costly repairs to your entire cooling system. What’s more, replacement also extends your AC’s lifespan altogether.
Another profound benefit of AC filter replacement is energy savings. According to the Department of Energy, replacing your dirty, clogged air filter with a clean one can potentially cut your air conditioner’s energy spending by up to 15%. Thus, keeping your HVAC energy costs down starts with an air filter replacement.
Lastly, the single most crucial benefit of AC filter replacement lies in the zone of safety and healthy living. A high-performing AC filter does an excellent job at keeping out dust, pollutants, and other harmful particulate matter from your living or working space. This defensive role of the air filter ensures your indoor space is constantly supplied with only quality air.
Subsequently, improved indoor air quality can positively impact your family’s or employees’ health, especially if you have occupants with respiratory issues.
What Happens If You Don’t Replace My AC Filter?
While most people like to overlook the AC filter by thinking it is an insignificant component, the bare truth is that, as tiny as it is, the filter largely dictates the quality of your indoor air and comfort. Thus, neglecting AC filter maintenance gives you the direct opposite of that, providing poor air quality and endless discomfort.
The primary job of the air filter is to protect your air conditioner from the harmful invasion of dust, dirt, debris, and other harmful particles. That means neglecting the air filter may end up in:
- Dirt buildup on blower fans and ductwork
- Moisture and mold contamination indoors
- Accelerated wear and tear of your AC
To avoid these costly eventualities, you should talk to a proven AC expert from Fusion Plumbing & Air and discuss the best filter maintenance schedule in Tucson or Phoenix.
How Often Should You Replace Your AC Filter?
Finally, you may wonder how often you should replace your AC filter? There is no straight answer to this. Generally, most AC manufacturers recommend replacing your AC filter every three months (90 days).
However, that duration may not apply to everyone as some filters accumulate dirt faster than others. That’s why at Fusion Plumbing & Air, we believe the replacement frequency should vary according to several factors, including:
The hotter it is outside, the more frequently your AC runs and the more air that will need to circulate through your AC filter. This means more interaction with dust and particles, which may result in faster buildup and filter clogging.
If you have a pet dog or cat, then your indoor air is highly susceptible to pet hair and dander infestation. Your AC filter treats these as airborne contaminants and strives to eliminate them. This forces your filter to clog up faster and then need replacement at least every month.
Are you in the middle of a construction or remodeling project? All the mess of installing or replacing tiles, carpets, and dry wall can lead to faster filter clogging. Thus, as the project progresses and after completion, you may need to replace the AC filter often.
As a rule of thumb, the denser the AC filter, the longer its useful life. You can examine the filter’s density in terms of thickness. For instance, a filter with a one-inch thickness will need replacement more often than a filter with a four-inch thickness.
Generally, the more occupants in a space, the faster the air gets polluted, and more so in the company of a smoker. Moreover, if you have children, elderly people, or occupants with allergies, you may have to replace your filter after every 20 to 45 days.
Your AC filter’s minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) rating depicts the efficiency of the filter in trapping airborne particles. The higher the rating, the more effectively the filter can capture smaller particles. Thus, filters with higher MERV ratings may require frequent replacement to avoid airflow restriction by tiny particle accumulation.
Get Help from a Pro!
At Fusion Plumbing & Air, we are all about indoor air quality. We pride ourselves on unmatched cooling solutions geared at customer satisfaction. Whether you need the best filter recommendation or a quick replacement, we can offer you our expertise.
In addition to expert cooling solutions, we also provide exceptional heating, plumbing, drain cleaning, and free HVAC consulting for residential and commercial clients in Tucson and Phoenix, AZ. Contact Fusion Plumbing & Air today to learn more about our top-rated services.