DIY / Home Improvement

9 Air Filter Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Air Filter Running Longer

If you have an air filter, it’s important to keep it clean in order to maintain a good level of air quality in your home. If you don’t, you risk letting contaminants and bad odors run rampant in your living space. But how do you keep your air filter running longer?

Read on to learn 9 air filter maintenance tips that will help you!

1. Check Your Air Filter Each Month

Make a practice of checking your air filter each month. If you can schedule this check on the first day of each month, you’ll set yourself up for more consistent airflow in your home.

Not checking your air filter on regular basis means there’s a better chance of dust, mold, and pet dander finding its way into your airflow. You’ll notice this when you’re sitting to watch a tv show but stuck sneezing and coughing from the contaminants swirling around you. Add a monthly check to your calendar!

2. Find the Right Filter For Your Needs

Are you hoping to keep out the dust from your workshop? Or do you want an air filter that blocks the most particles from contaminating your air? Knowing what kind of air filter to get means understanding your needs.

You may be able to get away with a cheaper filter that your replace frequently, but if you’re susceptible to allergens, it’s worth it to upgrade.

3. Understand the Composition of Filters

Make sure to spend some time reading about the composition of air filters you can buy. A Honeywell air filter will list its efficiency ratings and describe its features on the packaging clearly, so there’s no guessing involved. You’ll know exactly what you’re getting.

Check the filtration ratings and look for more pleats on the filter if you’re hunting down a better filter.

4. Make Sure Your Air Filter Fits Properly

When it comes to air filter maintenance tips, making sure that your air filter fits well is a big one. A filter that does not fit snugly in place won’t let your furnace function as well.

Take the time to install the filter properly before you close everything up. The last thing you want is an air filter that’s not doing its job and instead is letting insulation pieces or other fire risks into your HVAC system!

5. Be Attentive to Air Quality Changes

Have you still been wondering, “How often should I change my air filter?” The answer may hinge on how your house smells. When you start to notice changes in air quality, that means it’s time to make a change.

You may also notice that you’re sneezing more or feeling congested. Signs of allergies indicate that your air is not as clean as it could be. Head to your air filter and check to see if it’s time to change it!

6. Look For Signs of Dirt

A clean filter means that it will last longer and keep your HVAC system running without issues. And another way to check for the cleanliness of your filter is to do a simple visual check.

Do you see dirt on your filter? If you’re nodding your head in the affirmative, that means it’s time for a new filter.

The good news is that a dirty filter is a sign that your filter is doing its job well. All of that dirt and debris could have been floating around in the air for you to breathe. Instead, it’s trapped in your filter!

7. Get an Efficient Filter

You’ll want to check the MERV rating on any filters you buy to get a sense of their efficiency. What is a MERV rating? MERV stands for minimum efficiency reporting values.

The MERV rating refers to how good a filter is at capturing particles in the air. If you’re looking for a filter that will keep your air the cleanest, choose a filter with a higher MERV rating. A rating of 5-8 is appropriate for most homes.

8. Air Filter Maintenance Requires Knowing Your Home

While it might be tempting to spring for the filter with the highest MERV rating, you might not see a huge difference in performance between it and a slightly lower-grade option. If you’re a person in normal health, you may be able to get away with spending a little less on a filter.

And you won’t lose out on performance — but you will save money. Ultimately, you need to do the research to understand what fits in your budget, and how you can get the most bang for your buck. For instance, while you may pay more for pleated filters than fiberglass ones, you’ll get better filtration power from the pleats.

9. Stock Up On Filters

To keep your airflow in the best shape possible, stock up on air filters. You may be able to set up a scenario where you subscribe and order them every month or two. Or you can just stock up in bulk!

When you have an air filter handy, you’ll be more likely to replace them on a routine basis. Keep them in a dry place in your basement or near your HVAC system.

Maintain Your Air Filter

Air filter maintenance needs to be a priority if you want your HVAC system to run smoothly and effectively. If you can make checking your air filter and changing it out a part of your monthly schedule, you stand a better chance of keeping your HVAC system in good shape. And better yet, you’ll keep those annoying particles out of the air so you won’t have to deal with allergies or poor air quality.

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