What You Need to Know About Your Furnace Filter

Did you know that 8 out of every 10 furnace breakdowns are caused by a dirty air filter?

It’s true. Air filters are one of the most important components of our home heating systems, yet many people do not give them the attention they deserve. In this article, the HVAC experts at Air Treatment Company will explain why the air filter is so important, and what you can do to prevent future problems.

What does the furnace air filter do?

Contrary to popular belief, the air filter in your furnace does not clean the air in your home. It is instead designed to catch dust, dirt, and other airborne particles, and trap them before they can enter your furnace’s blower fan.

Without a clean air filter, this debris can accumulate in the blower fan, hindering your furnace’s energy-efficiency and leading to premature breakdowns.

Different types of filters

There are many different types of air filters available for your furnace. Some of the most popular kinds include:

  • Fiberglass. Cheap and disposable. Good at catching lint and dust, but struggle to filter out smaller particles, such as pollen.

  • Pleated. These filters are also disposable. They tend to have large surface areas, which allows them to capture particles more effectively than fiberglass.

  • Washable. Less common and more expensive than disposable types, but only require replacement every few years. These filters can simply be cleaned under running water.

  • Electrostatic. Can be reusable or disposable. Electrostatic filters are specially charged to attract airborne particles, making them the most effective type of filter.

Which filter is best?

Filters can also be vary by size, frame material, and performance rating. Which filter is best for you depends on the model of your heating system. Refer to your owner’s manual to see which filter the manufacturer recommends.

No matter what type of filter you use, the most important thing is that you keep it clean. Depending on the size and type of your filter, you may need to change it as often as every month. It may sound like a hassle, but this quick chore can significantly lower your energy costs and extend the lifespan of your heating system.

Maintaining your HVAC filter should be a relatively simple process, but if you are unsure about where to begin, the experts at the Air Treatment Company are here to help. If you live in Fairfax County, Virginia, call us for all of your HVAC needs at (703) 270-0881.

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