It is commonly stressed amongst the HVAC industry that homeowners stay on top of changing or cleaning the filters. It is important that the airflow is not impeded to maximize the HVAC system’s effectiveness. It is recommended that the filters get changed every 30-45 days. For people that live in dusty climates, have indoor pets, or if occupants have excessive allergy symptoms. When the air conditioner or heater doesn’t function efficiently, experts recommend checking the filters first before anything else because clogged filters can hinder the performance of your system. So, when you changed the filters 2-3 weeks ago and find the filters are clogged, it can be a bit concerning, and even more so if it becomes consistent.
Why Do My Air Filters Get Black & Clogged So Fast?
1) A 1-inch Pleated Air Filter is Being Used. Since they are designed to catch more airborne contaminants, one-inch pleated filters get dirty quick. It catches everything from big to small fish as one of 1-inch pleated air filters as a fine fish net with a very small gap. This also indicates that the net fills up with fish faster, about 3 times fast.
Ideal Solution: Consider switching out the cheap disposable fiberglass filter or thicker pleated filters. Also, installing an air cleaner instead if you are serious about improving your home’s indoor air quality should also be considered.
2) The Air Conditioner’s Fan is Set to “On.” Constantly circulating air over the air filter occurs when the thermostat’s fan setting is set to “On” the indoor blower will run 24/7. The filter will quickly get dirty since it is constantly catching airborne contaminants. Additionally, because running a blower nonstop is not cheap, your energy bills are higher.
The Solution: Make sure it’s set to “Auto” after checking the thermostat fan setting. When your system is heating or cooling the air, the blower should only run.
3) Air Ducts are Leaking. Especially if your filter located near your AC’s inside unit, leaks in the return ductwork pull in dust from unconditioned space, like an attic or crawl space, and quickly clog the filter. Also, your energy bills month after month will run up with duct leaks. Due to leaks, holes, and poorly connected ducts, a typical home has about 20% to 30% of the air that moves through the duct system is lost. No matter how the thermostat is set, the result is higher utility bills and difficulty keeping the house comfortable.
Solution: Make certain an HVAC contractor to investigate your air ducts for leaks and seal them if needed.
4) You Have Indoor Pets. In no time at all, pet fur / hair and dander will quickly clog up your filter when you have furry pets living inside the home.
Optimal Solution: If you have pets consider investing in a more advanced air filtration system and ensure your pets are routinely groomed.
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