When it comes to maintaining your HVAC system, one of the most important things to consider is how often you should replace your air filter. In general, most air filter manufacturers and HVAC companies recommend changing your air filter every 90 days or 3 months. This may vary depending on the location of your home, if you have pets, and the age of your system and equipment. The longest time you should go without changing the air filter is the recommended time of 90 days.
However, if replacing the air filter isn't possible for an extended period, going beyond 90 days won't cause irreparable damage to your air conditioning system. But it will put unwanted pressure on your HVAC system, resulting in poor air quality and air circulation. The ideal is to change your air filter every three months, but there are certain factors to consider when determining when to change an old filter. Children are more sensitive than adults to indoor air pollutants such as mold, dust mite debris, dander and pollen, so make sure you use quality air filters and replace them before they become too clogged and dirty.
If you have young children at home, it's a good idea to use high-quality pleated air filters and change them every two months. A general rule of thumb is to keep track of how long the air filter has been in place. The recommended average length of service is approximately 10,000 to 15,000 miles, which for most people is approximately every year. But keep in mind that this is just a recommendation and doesn't take into account your individual driving situation.
If you can't tell by looking, but it's been more than three years or 30,000 miles, you should probably buy a new one (especially if you can save money doing it yourself). Outdoor air quality can have a big impact on how often the air filter becomes dirty and needs to be replaced. If someone in your family suffers from mild to moderate allergies, you can put on a better air filter or change it more often. When you buy a new air filter, you'll find the manufacturer's recommendations for the replacement program.
A good indication that the air filter needs to be replaced is the presence of black smoke coming from the exhaust pipes when you start the engine. As a general rule, you'll want to replace your home's pleated air filters and heating filters every 90 days. If you live in a big city, pollutants such as smoke, dust and other debris will seep inside and clog the air filter at a much faster rate. If the dirty air filter is completely covered with dust and dirt, it is a good idea to change the filter even if it has not reached the end of its recommended life.
Yes, changing the filter has several impacts on your HVAC system's ability to cool your home and overall air quality. Other signs that the air filter is affecting the performance of your car are sudden movements when accelerating or not responding as well as it should. A clean air filter will help your engine perform better; on newer cars, it can increase acceleration by up to 11%, and on older cars it can improve mileage by up to 14%. However, many homeowners are unaware of how often air filters need to be replaced, making their system vulnerable to damage.