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Air Filter Purposes

Filter Shipping offers a wide range of replacement air filters to ensure more systems all across America can be serviced quickly and affordably. Having a proper filter is a preventative measure for a variety of problems, from skyrocketing energy costs to complete system failures.

What do air filters do?

The main purpose of your air filter is to keep particles like dust away from your furnace or air conditioning unit. In addition, depending on the size of particles your filter will trap, this process will also eliminate particles responsible for allergies or illnesses from the air in your home.

How quickly do filters get dirty?

Air filters are designed in various ways to trap particles. Some systems are optimized for thick box filters, which are capable of trapping more particles over long periods of time. In order for a box filter to work effectively, it must be installed properly in the correct kind of unit.

Depending on the time of year, filters may need to be changed every month. We recommend scheduling a time to check your air filter for particles at regular intervals, and changing it out as soon as you notice the need for it. Signs that an air filter needs to be changed include increased visible particles and decreased air or heating efficiency. Normally, this occurs between one and three months, with thicker filters lasting up to 12 months, depending on your system's demands and your location.

What gets trapped in air filters?

Air filters are designed to trap a variety of particles. The types of particles your filter can trap depends on its MERV rating. Most one-inch filters are capable of trapping dirt, dust, mold and some pollen. A higher MERV rating indicates more trapping power. Some particles are too small to be visible individually with the naked eye, other larger particles are quickly apparent.

What happens when a filter is dirty?

We already discussed the general purpose of air filters above. Now, let's get into the finer details of how dirty air filters affect your home, air or furnace unit and pocketbook.

Air Quality

Although your filter's primary job is to keep your AC or furnace unit in tiptop shape, depending on its MERV rating, it can also greatly reduce the number and kinds of particles floating around in your home. MERV 8 filters capture basic irritants including dust and some pollens while higher MERV-rated filters can trap tiny particles, which include bacteria and cigarette smoke.
When your air filter has reached capacity, it can no longer trap particles efficiently, making you more susceptible to allergies and illnesses.

Energy Consumption

As your filter collects the debris it’s supposed to, its functionality will eventually be compromised. In order to ensure continued proper airflow through your AC or furnace, we recommend that you schedule a time once a month to peek at how your filter is doing.

Since your air conditioner is used more often in the summer, keep in mind that more particles will be trapped more quickly during those months. The same is true for furnace filters in the winter.

If your system is struggling due to compromised airflow, this will be reflected on your energy bill. In addition, you’ll find that it takes longer to achieve the desired temperature in your home.

System Functionality

1. Wear & Tear
When your system can’t take in air, it will continually strain in order to compensate for the reduction in flow required to keep everything functioning properly. We already discussed how this will be reflected on your monthly bill, but the damage doesn't stop there. Parts are much more prone to premature wear and tear when your system does more than it should, and overheating can occur.

2. Freezing Up
Your air conditioner works by utilizing internal coils that depend on the surrounding warm air not to freeze over. With enough dust around these coils, warm air can no longer reach these coils, ultimately leading to malfunction and damage. A frozen unit will require professional maintenance and could result in many unexpected costs. Replacing a filter regularly is quick and affordable, especially when compared to the cost and headache associated with unit repair or replacement.

Every system demands a specific air filter. If you're not sure which filter will adequately ensure the long-term health of your AC or furnace, while also keeping your home free of harmful particles, contact us. We have experts standing by ready to help you make the best choice in air filter replacements.