Air filters are a critical component of a healthy HVAC system. Their basic function is to prevent particulates and pollutants such as dust, sand, dirt, pet dander, pollen, and allergens from entering the internal components of the HVAC system. Without air filters, all kinds of particulates and pollutants would collect inside your HVAC system and lead to equipment breakdown. Besides, your home would be filled with dirty air, hence putting you at a higher risk for respiratory conditions.
Pleated air filters are made of polyester fabrics or cotton folds and have a pleated design that maximizes the surface area for filtering. Pleated air filters with a high MER rating offer a much higher level of filtration than standard filters.
As the name suggests, fiberglass air filters are made of 15–60 μm glass fibers laid over each other. These are the most common type of air filters used in residential HVAC systems. Fiberglass air filters are inexpensive when compared to pleated air filters. However, these filters have the lowest MERV rating, meaning they are not effective at removing small particles. Fiberglass air filters should be changed every 30 days.
Washable electrostatic filters are made with woven polypropylene media and use static electricity to trap particles in the filter. These filters are an economical option since they can be washed and reused for up to 10 years. Besides, they are more efficient than standard disposable filters. You should wash out electrostatic air filters at least once a month to keep them in good working condition.
How often you should change air filters depends on many factors, including air filter design, household size, indoor air quality, and MERV rating. Fiberglass air filters should be changed every 30 days. Particles can quickly accumulate on these air filters, especially during the warm months. For 1-inch to 3-inch pleated air filters, you should change them every 60 to 120 days. Because 4-inch and 5-inch pleated air filters have more surface area for particles to build up, they require less frequent changes. 4-inch and 5-inch pleated filters can last between 6 months and 9 months before needing to be replaced, while 6-inch pleated air filters can last even much longer. It’s advisable to inspect your filters every month to figure out if they need to be replaced.
If you are looking for a professional HVAC company to help you with air filter replacement, AC repair, or AC replacement, get in touch with Absolute HVAC Service. We are a reputable and experienced HVAC company that provides a wide range of residential and commercial HVAC services. Whether you are in need of HVAC installation, AC repair, furnace replacement, heating repair, thermostat replacement, or maintenance services, our technicians have the expertise, experience, and equipment to provide you with dependable services.