Why Cleaning Your AC Filter Is Critical

An HVAC system has to have a constant supply of air in order to function properly. While you could get all the airflow you need by removing your AC filter, which restricts airflow as it removes dust, your AC unit would be inundated with dust, which would clog up system components. Thus, it is critical to have an air filter, but it is also important to properly maintain it. 

Change Your Filter Regularly

Deciding how often to change your filter is not as easy as picking an interval of time and sticking with it. For example, if you live in a dusty area, you might need to change your filter much more often than you would in areas that do not get a lot of dust. The best thing to do is inspect your filter regularly and change it as necessary until you get an idea for how long you go without changing your filter. Just remember it is better to change your filter too often rather than not often enough because a dirty filter can reduce your overall system efficiency by up to 15% and cause other problems as detailed below. 

Air-Starved Evaporator Coils

If you don't change your filter as often as you should, it can get so dirty that it will restrict airflow. If there is not enough warm air flowing over your evaporator coils, they can get so cold that they begin to freeze any water vapor present in the air in your home. As more and more water vapor freezes, layers of ice build up on your evaporator coils and restrict airflow to the point that little or no air makes it into your home. You will have to turn off your thermostat and wait for the ice to melt before you can get your system up and running again. 

Dirty Coils

A dirty filter can also deform due to the forces acting on it and once it deforms, dirty air can get around the filter and coat your coils. Dirty coils will further restrict AC efficiency and can be fiendishly hard to clean properly due to the compact dimensions inside your evaporator coils. 

As you can see, changing out a filter is more than just a routine that you can neglect if it hampers your busy lifestyle. Instead, you should make a study of how quickly your filter gets dirty and if certain times of year are worse than others. You can then create the ideal schedule for cleaning your filter to make sure that you get as much use as possible from your filters (to keep costs down) while still being able to change them often enough to make sure your AC system functions as it should. Contact a contractor, like Century Heating & Air Conditioning Services, for more help.