How Often Should You Check Your Air Conditioner Filter? A Comprehensive Guide

The types of air conditioning filters used in your home can have a major impact on how often you need to replace them. If you don't suffer from allergies, standard 1- to 3-inch air filters should be changed every 30 to 60 days. However, if you have mild or moderate allergies, it's best to change your filters every three weeks. Fiberglass air filters are the more affordable option, but they are less efficient at capturing dust and particles from the air.

These types of filters usually need to be changed every 30 days or less.

You can hear it: Your HVAC technician is giving you lessons on how to make sure you change the air filter.

So, how often should you check your air conditioner filter? The general consensus is that you should replace your home air filter every 3 months, or 90 days. But what happens if you let that time go by for a while? Before we talk about WHEN you should change your air filter, let's start with the WHY. Air filters are usually made of spun fiberglass or pleated paper framed with cardboard for greater stability and rigidity.

As a general rule, you should clean the air conditioner filters in the indoor unit every two weeks. In dusty or polluted environments, you should clean your filters more regularly. If you live alone, don't have pets, and the surrounding outdoor air is of good quality, the manufacturer's recommendations on changing the filter are probably right for you. It is important to closely monitor the cleaning process, as it can affect the performance of the air conditioner.

Pleated filters are usually better than non-pleated filters, as they allow more surface area to accumulate dust, pet hair, and other debris that floats in the air. As a general rule, lower home occupancy extends the life of the air filter, while higher home occupancy reduces it. Therefore, how often you change your air conditioner filter depends on the type of filter and the conditions in your home. If you don't use your air conditioning unit often, you can wait up to six months between cleanings.

Dirty filters restrict the flow of cold air, which can cause it to accumulate inside the air conditioner. The only type of filters that trap allergens and spores are HEPA, or high-energy particulate air filters. After a period of smoky days and poor outdoor air quality, inspect the air filter to see if it needs to be changed. You may need to pay more attention to filters if the air conditioner is in constant use, exposed to dust, or if you have furry pets in the house.

According to the American Allergy and Asthma Foundation (AAFA), “indoor air quality is just as important as outdoor air quality” so it's best to replace your filter at least 2 to 3 months apart. If you have young children at home, it's a good idea to use high-quality pleated air filters and change them as often as two months. If you are going to clean your air conditioner filter, you must remove it and replace it with a new one. This will ensure that your home is getting clean and healthy air all year round.

Chelsey Barkdull
Chelsey Barkdull

Typical music lover. Hardcore twitter specialist. Passionate music scholar. General baconaholic. . Friendly music practitioner.

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