Lowering your energy bills, improving indoor air quality, and lengthening the life of your air conditioner is as easy as installing a new A/C filter. A dirty filter slows the airflow going through the indoor blower and increases your energy bills. When you run your system with a clogged filter, the whole system suffers. The moment you replace it, airflow increases, airborne particulates drop, and system performance improves.

Keeping the filter clean will prevent a host of problems that your A/C system could develop. Reduced airflow makes your home harder to cool, so the system has to run longer. It stresses the parts and increases your electric bills. Over time, dust builds inside the blower and covers the evaporator coil, which insulates it from the air passing over it. Since the airflow is slower and the coil is covered, it won’t collect as much heat from your home’s air. This can freeze the coil over, leading to frost. The system will run continuously, and once the frost melts, it can cause water damage. This can also burn out the compressor since the refrigerant doesn’t properly change from a liquid to a gas.

During the cooling season, check the filter monthly, installing a new A/C filter when the existing one looks dirty. If you’re not sure, hold the filter up to the light. If you can’t see through the filter material, it probably needs to be changed. When choosing a new filter, make sure that you write down its exact dimensions. Even a small gap around the frame for the air filter can introduce dust into your home’s air supply and inside the blower. Its efficiency level, signified by its MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value) rating, is also important to know. Most systems work well with MERV efficiencies between 7 and 12. Consult the owner’s manual or a trained professional to determine the maximum value to use with your blower. The highest MERV filters may impede airflow in your system.

To learn more about installing a new A/C filter, contact Pipe Works Services We’ve provided superior HVAC and plumbing services in Morris, Union, Somerset, and Essex counties since 2010. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Chatham, NJ, and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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