Changing the filter on your home’s furnace is one of those maintenance tasks that you always mean to do but is very easy to forget. General guidelines suggest a filter change about every three months, and unfortunately that is probably exactly the amount of time it takes to slip your mind. To help motivate you to remember, here’s a brief rundown of what happens when you don’t change the filter.
Higher energy bills. Not changing your filter will cost you more in your monthly heating bills because your furnace has to work harder and longer to pull air through a dirty filter and less air circulates through the system. As a result, it takes longer to heat your home, and it costs more to do it.
Shorter furnace life. When your furnace has to work extra hard to move air because of a dirty filter, the lifespan of your furnace decreases. When the filter is overwhelmed, more dust and debris work their way into the inner components, where it can build up and lead to a breakdown.
Poor air quality. The same dust and debris that have overwhelmed your filter and gunked up your furnace are also being dispersed into the air throughout your home. This can trigger an increase in allergies and related respiratory issues, especially for the very young and the elderly. Under certain conditions, a dirty air filter might also lead to mold growth.
Risk of furnace shutdown. A furnace does its job by moving air, and when it has to strain to pull air in and struggle to move air out, it may overheat, causing the furnace to trigger a safety mechanism and shut down. Under extreme conditions, buildup of dust and debris can also lead to a furnace fire.
Costly repair bills. The increased amount of stress placed on your furnace by a dirty filter can cause it to fail and cause you to call a professional for service to fix the problem.
An uncomfortable feeling. A furnace that’s operating without a clean air filter will not function as efficiently and effectively as it’s intended and will leave your home feeling generally less comfortable because it is unable to keep up with the heating demand.
Clearly, changing your furnace filter is well worth the minimal effort it requires. To make sure you remember, use a calendar or reminder app on your smartphone or computer. It also helps to purchase furnace filters in multi-packs, so you don’t have to run out to the store when it’s time for a change. Purchasing a multi-pack will usually save you a few dollars, too. Lastly, keep a note next to the furnace for recording the date of each filter change just in case you miss a reminder.
To maintain your home’s furnace and ensure it operates at its best, have it serviced annually. A routine tune-up will give you peace of mind that all components are functioning correctly and operating at peak efficiency. To learn more, call HB McClure at 717-232-HEAT (4328) or request an appointment online.