An air filter is a vital component to your HVAC system, preventing pollutants from entering your indoor air. These pollutants include dirt, dust, tree pollen, smoke and more. Choosing the right air filtration system for your HVAC system can make a huge difference in the quality of air circulating through your home. Without proper filtration, your indoor air quality can actually be worse than the outdoor air quality of where you live. But is a simple air filter all you need? What should you know about your home’s air filter?
Boehmer Heating & Cooling Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Air Filters’
One of the (very few) blessings of cooler weather is that the annual frost comes, effectively shutting down vegetation that can cause a tremendous amount of allergy problems for many. However, a large number of allergy sufferers aren’t challenged just by outdoor allergens: they also struggle with indoor allergens like dust and pet dander. Sneezing your head off all winter long is not something anyone wants to deal with, so if you suffer from indoor allergies, or someone in your home does, it’s important to make sure that you continue to use an upgraded air filter in your home.
This is the time of year when everyone starts shifting gears from summer relaxing to back-to-school. However, if you are an allergy sufferer this may be one of your most challenging times of year thanks to allergens like ragweed. However, you have a great tool at your disposal for countering the effects of late summer allergies: your AC’s air filter. The standard air filter that comes with your air conditioner isn’t going to help you much, but an upgraded air filter installed by the indoor air quality experts at Boehmer Heating & Cooling can help alleviate many of your allergy symptoms.
You vacuum, you polish, you take your shoes off before entering the house, but yet it is still there: dust. And it is endless. If you have a forced air system in your home, you know how irritating swirling dust can be, especially for the allergy sufferers in your home. While it may look as if dust emanates from your air conditioning system, it doesn’t: the dust in the air flow is actually from your home. So how is this dust getting there? You may be surprised.
Allergy sufferers know that at this time of year as the temperature rises, so do pollen counts. While the flora and fauna releasing the pollen are outside, it isn’t hard for allergens to get inside and into your HVAC system. A great way to drastically reduce allergens from swirling around your home with your forced air system is to use a mechanical air filter. It is true that your HVAC comes with a standard air filter, but this air filter’s job is not to improve your indoor air quality; it is to keep large particles of dirt and dust from coating your HVAC system. If you want a mechanical air filter that will help your allergies, the experts at Boehmer Heating & Cooling can help. Just give us a call, and we’ll schedule you an appointment.
If you moved into a new home or had someone change the filters on your Pittsburg heating or air conditioning system for you, you may notice that whoever did the job put on the wrong size filter. This is not uncommon and is usually the result of an effort to save either time or money. However, in the long run it actually costs both. Here is how you can fix the problem of a wrong size filter.
The WRONG Way
If you have a filter that is too big for your system, it may seem like an easy enough fix– just fold it over or trim it down, right? Not so fast.
Folding the filter over makes for an imperfect seal. Air will leak through and around the bend, bypassing the filter entirely. This causes dirt and debris to build up on the fan, slows down air flow, degrades performance, decreases air quality and overall makes a big mess that you will have to pay to fix or clean up later.
Bending or cutting the filter also decreases its structural integrity. The whole filter can collapse while installed, creating not just a performance issue and a potentially costly repair, but also possibly creating unsafe conditions.
Furthermore, don’t give into the temptation to run your Pittsburg HVAC system without a filter for the time being. The debris will quickly build up in your AC system, as well as being blown into your home. Heating and cooling systems should always be operated with the proper filter installed.
The RIGHT Way
So, what do you do when you have an air filter that is the wrong size? The only solution is to find the right size. If you are having trouble finding the right air filter for your system, try these tips:
- Refer to your owner’s manual for the filter model number.
- Have a Pittsburg air conditioning professional inspect your system and replace the filter. (You should have a professional inspection once a year, anyway.)
- For HVAC systems that are large or have special dimensions, special order custom filters to fit.
Above all, never operate your HVAC system without a clean, correctly sized filter properly installed. Call Boehmer Heating & Cooling today if you need any help with your HVAC system!
Air conditioners cost money to operate – even more when they don’t work at 100% efficiency. So, it is important to perform the various regular maintenance tasks on your Pittsburgh AC that ensure the system uses as little electricity as possible. The first thing on your list (and the easiest) is cleaning those filters.
Keeping Filters Clean
The Department of Energy’s Energy Savers website states that you can reduce your air conditioner’s energy consumption by as much as 15% simply by keeping the air filters clean. Why do they matter so much? Consider the nature of a filter.
The filter on your AC unit is designed to capture any dust, debris and sediment in the air supply. If that dust and sediment was allowed in, not only would it gum up the mechanical workings of the device, it would get into your ductwork and reduce the air quality of your home. So, filters are used to capture such things. However, when a filter gets clogged, the system must work harder to draw the air in. As it works harder, the motor turns faster and more electricity is used.
It takes very little to clog the filter of an AC unit, especially if it is running 24 hours a day for two or three months out of the year. So, it’s best to check your filters once every 30 days regardless of what type of filter you are using.
Which Filters to Check
The main filter on your AC unit should be checked along with any air handler filters and any air cleaner filters you have installed in your system. Another thing to consider is the condition of your home and the area around your outdoor condenser. If you have pets, lots of plants or your condenser is located in a dusty area, you may need to check and change those filters even more often.
Most filters are located along the return length of the ductwork – sometimes in ceiling ducts and walls, though they may also be located in your furnace’s air handler or inside the air conditioning unit. If you have window units or mini splits, the filters are frequently in the unit.
Clean air filters are important for your health, your wallet and the longevity of your Pittsburgh AC system. Stay on top of them and you will save money in more ways than you might expect. To schedule your annual maintenance visit today, give Boehmer Heating & Cooling a call!
Having a high performance, energy efficient HVAC system will save you a good deal of money in terms of your monthly heating and cooling bills. But that efficiency will not last unless you also take the necessary steps to keep your equipment in good working order. While regular maintenance visits from a professional HVAC technician are an important part of this, there are also several things you can do on your own to keep your equipment running at peak efficiency.
- Keep it Clear – The first thing you should do is to make sure that there is plenty of space cleared around your outdoor unit. Whether it is the condenser and compressor for your air conditioning system or part of your heat pump, that outdoor equipment needs to have plenty of space to vent hot air. Also, the space will mean that debris is less likely to develop inside the unit.
- Clean the Condensing Coil – While your technician will do this when they make their annual visit, it is best to clean your coil more than just once a year. Just make sure that the power is turned off to your unit before you begin. This will help the unit cool air more efficiently and can prevent a whole host of other problems from developing.
- Check on the Blower – If your blower is not working right or the blade is clogged, your HVAC unit will not work properly. Make sure your blower fan is free of all debris and that is turns freely once you have cleaned it. If you are still having a problem with it, you may have to call a technician for repairs. Cleaning the blower out on a regular basis, however, should keep this from becoming a problem you need a professional for.
- Air Filters – You should also make sure you change your air filters regularly. This can help to keep your indoor air clean and healthy and it will also enable your HVAC system to run more efficiently.
- Clean it Out – Clean out any debris that you can reach from any part of your system. Just make sure any time you work inside your HVAC system that you have all of the power turned off. Anything from leaves to dust can get in there and cause a problem if it is allowed to build up over time. As long as you are on top of things and keep to a regular schedule of maintenance, none of this should take you very long.