What’s the Deal with Air Filters? | Insight from Your Trusted Minneapolis, MN Heating and AC Repair Service Provider
When you’re running heating and cooling through ducts and vents and into your home, it can be tough to maintain good indoor air quality. The truth of the matter is, ducts tend to get dirty and a lot of air isn’t all that clean to begin with. This is why the HVAC system in your Minneapolis, MN, home has an air filter in it to remove contaminants before they reach your home. If you want to make sure you’re working with your heating and AC repair expert to achieve the best indoor air quality, here’s what you need to know about the role air filters play.
How Do Air Filters Work?
All the air that runs through your HVAC system has to enter your home somehow, which is why you’ve got ducts running throughout your home. Unfortunately, these ducts tend to get pretty dirty because of all the air that runs through them and the dust and dirt particles it brings with it. Your air filter is designed to remove dust, dirt and allergens before they get to your home.
The best thing you can do if you want to maintain good indoor air quality is have a heating and AC repair specialist replace your air filter for you on a regular basis. Over time, your air filter will get clogged up and lose its ability to trap contaminants, plus it can cause serious problems when it comes to heating and cooling efficiency.
Replacing Your Air Filter
A lot of Minneapolis, MN, homeowners don’t even know that they have an air filter in their HVAC system. The truth is, changing your air filter should be the most frequent maintenance you do when it comes to your HVAC system. At the very least, you should make sure you’re changing your air filter at least once every six months.
How often you replace your air filter depends on the conditions inside your home. Some homes don’t have a lot of dust and dirt floating around while others seem to be a magnet for it. If you’ve got pets or a large family, however, your air filter is going to get dirtier a lot quicker than most. For households with a lot of family members and/or multiple pets, it’s best to replace your air filter with a new one at least once every few months.
Air Filter Ratings
One of the most important things to understand about air filters is that they aren’t all made equal. While every air filter is designed to remove contaminants from the air before they reach your home, some air filters do a better job than others. You can figure out how good an air filter is at removing contaminants by looking at the rating it was given.
MERV ratings are the most popular ratings for air filters. The higher the MERV rating on an AC filter is, the smaller particles it’s able to filter out of the air. Most heating and AC repair companies recommend using a filter with a MERV rating of at least 3 or 4, which is considered the minimal residential filtration level. For commercial buildings, the minimum recommended MERV rating is 8 since there are more contaminants to remove.
If you have a lot of pets, you might want to consider getting a filter with a MERV rating of 12 or higher. These filters are capable of removing most of the dust and allergens from the air and keeping you breathing freely. However, a more powerful air filter may restrict airflow and affect the efficiency of your HVAC system.
Some heating and AC repair experts may recommend a HEPA air filter. HEPA air filters are designed to provide some of the very best filtration without restricting air flow and leading to expensive repairs. However, they do cost a fair bit more than a standard MERV filter.
Airflow and Efficiency
While the most important reason to replace your air filter is to promote good indoor air quality, it’s also a good way to avoid heating and AC repair calls. Your HVAC system needs plenty of airflow in order to work properly, but that airflow depends on how well air can make it through the filter. A clogged air filter will restrict airflow and make things harder on your heating and cooling systems.
Every heating and AC repair company gets frequent calls about an AC that isn’t working well enough or seems to be blowing warm air. Generally, this is a result of a problem with airflow as a result of a clogged air filter. However, it’s important to have a heating and AC repair expert take a look to make sure you’re not dealing with a more serious heating or cooling problem.
If you want to avoid spending a fortune on heating and AC repair, you can do that by having maintenance done on a regular basis. Every time you have maintenance done, you should make sure you get your air filter replaced as well.
The easiest way to keep up with HVAC maintenance is to have seasonal maintenance done twice a year. Since you tend to use your heating and cooling the least during spring and fall, these are the best times to have maintenance done.
You expect your heating and cooling systems to work day in and day out, but you need to take good care of things if you want them to last. Having seasonal maintenance done is one of the best ways to promote airflow and keep your HVAC system up and running.
If you’re looking for heating and AC repair in Minneapolis, MN, Blue Ox Heating & Air has you covered. Thanks to years of experience, we know what it takes to keep your home at the perfect temperature all year long. When you have an HVAC problem, just call Blue Ox Heating & Air at (952) 208-4570.