One of the most important things you can do to keep your air conditioning unit running smoothly and efficiently is to keep up with the proper maintenance on your air filter. But you may find yourself having to change your air filter more often than you think you should need to. If this is the case for you, there may be a few things that are causing your air filter to become dirty quicker than expected – some things may have to do with how you are running and maintaining your HVAC system, while other factors have to do with dust and other airborne contaminants. Here we’ll discuss the choices you could be making in how you run and maintain your HVAC unit that could be causing your air filters to become dirty faster than they should.
Lack Of Upkeep On Air Filter Maintenance
If you are not properly maintaining your air filters by changing or cleaning them when you are supposed to, this will obviously cause an issue with how dirty your filter becomes and the effect it has on your HVAC system as a whole. Most HVAC systems suggest the filter being changed somewhere between once a month to every two or three months in order to keep your system running as efficiently as possible. The frequency at which you will need to change your air filter will depend on a number of factors such as how often you use your system and how many contaminants you have in the home. We recommend your mark your air filter changes on a calendar in order to keep up with a regular maintenance schedule and ensure you don’t miss any needed changes.
The Air Filters You Are Using Are Of Low Quality
There are many options available when choosing which type of air filter to use. If you are not choosing one of a good quality, it is not likely to last very long before needing to be changed. Air filter quality is measured by a MERV rating (minimum efficiency reporting value) – the higher the MERV ranking is, the more efficient it is likely to be. However, air filters that have a lower MERV rating also tend to be less-expensive than air filters with a higher MERV rating so they can be tempting to buy. While these filters may be less-expensive, it is important to remember that they will likely last a shorter amount of time before needing to be changed, adding up in cost in the long-run. Air filters with a lower MERV rating should usually be changed about every 30 days, so they are only a good option if you intend to keep up with the maintenance schedule.
You Have Leaking Air Ducts
Another issue that could be affecting how quickly your air filters are becoming dirty is when your system has leaking air ducts. When your system’s air ducts are leaking it causes dust and other airborne contaminants to be pulled into your unit from areas that are used less often and are generally dirtier than the rest of your home, such as the attic. Not only does this mean your system’s air filters will become clogged and dirty more quickly, but it also means your system as a whole will run less efficiently and use up more energy. If you suspect you have leaking air ducts, it is best to contact a HVAC specialist with the training necessary to identify and correct leaking ducts.
Not Running Your Fan On “Auto”
Your system’s thermostat will provide you with two different fan settings to choose from – “on” and “auto”. When you choose to set your system’s fan to the “on” setting, your system’s fan will run continuously until you turn it off. When you choose to set your system’s fan to the “auto” setting, your system’s fan will turn on and off automatically as it cycles through each heating or cooling cycle. By setting your thermostat to “auto”, your system will be able to run and process through the airborne contaminants coming into your unit more efficiently.