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Your Heater’s Air Filter: Small Part, Big Job

We’re several months into the heating season. You’ve undoubtedly been using your heater regularly, depending on it to heat your home to a comfortable level. To help make sure you’re able to continue relying on your heater, your air filter is probably due to be replaced if you haven’t done so already. 

Air filters should be replaced every 1-3 months depending on various factors. Replacing the filter regularly is an essential part of efficient heating in Hagerstown, MD. If you’re not aware of why it’s so helpful to your home comfort, keep reading to learn about the big job your little air filter does.

How Does My Air Filter Get Dirty?

This is a great question to ask. Many homeowners who keep a clean house wonder why they need to clean or change their air filters when their homes are impeccably clean. Unfortunately, the cleanliness of your home doesn’t make a huge difference. That’s because although you can’t see it, there’s a lot of particulate matter floating through your home. 

Dust, dirt, pollen, and mold spores enter your home from the outside. If you have pets, there’s pet fur and dander in the air. There’s even human dander, the small, flaky pieces of skin and hair that all humans shed. There are also fumes from household chemicals and smoke if you have a fireplace or smokers in the home. 

Your Air Filter’s Important Job

Another misconception people have about air filters is this: they assume that the air filter’s job is to protect their indoor air quality. However, that’s not actually the primary purpose. 

The big job your small air filter does is to protect the internal parts of your big, expensive HVAC system. A heater is a complicated piece of machinery and just like any other complex machine, its interior needs to stay clean and free of dirt and debris in order for it to work efficiently and effectively. The air filter keeps all that particulate matter floating around in the air out of your heater.

When the air filter isn’t changed or cleaned regularly, all those particles clog the air filter. Your heater needs a specific amount of air moving through it for it to work properly. When your heater’s components get clogged with dirt and debris, it results not only in poor performance, but all that extra work can also lead to problems with your heater. 

Consequences of Not Changing the Filter

The biggest consequence is that your heater might not last for its estimated lifespan. A heater that is constantly struggling to do its job wears down faster than a heater that has a clean filter and runs efficiently.

Other problems could include decreased performance from your heater. It’ll take longer to heat your home to your desired temperature, resulting in higher heating expenses. Or it could heat the rooms of your home unevenly, leaving some rooms cold and some lukewarm. Or it could break down entirely, which you definitely don’t want to happen with our cold, frigid winters.

We hope you’ve learned something about the big job your little air filter does. If you haven’t changed it this season, now’s the time to do so.

For professional service on your heating in Hagerstown, MD, contact Premier HVAC Services.

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