We have stressed the importance of changing your air filters many different times, in many different ways, but did you change it? I know it is hard to remember to do. It is not something that you are looking at all day, so the thought vanishes as quickly as it comes.
Clean air filters are critical to keeping your furnace working at peak levels for as long as possible. Most people believe that an air filter is there to provide clean breathing air in their home, but really it is there to protect the furnace blower fan from dirt and debris. It does help to clean the air you breathe, but that is not its main goal. An air cleaner will do a much better job at controlling air quality in your home than an air filter.
When replacing your air filter, make sure you are getting the right size. If it is too big or too small it will not be able to do its job properly. When your air filter is dirty or clogged it blocks airflow, which can cause damage to your furnace. There all kinds of different air filters out there and I am sure you have stared blankly at the selection a time or two when you have gone to purchase a new one.
You may notice each one has a MERV rating, which stands for a minimum efficiency reporting value; these were designed as a measurement scale to rate the effectiveness of air filters. They usually range from 1 to 16; with the higher number being equivalent to the more particles the filter can remove. However, the higher number also restricts the most amount of airflow, which is not necessarily a good thing. Your best bet is to stick to a MERV rating between 8 to 11. A good rule of thumb is to buy middle of road – not the worst and not the best.
Just to be safe, check with the manufacturer of your furnace to ensure you are providing exactly what your furnace needs to continue to operate efficiently. At Carmine’s, we recommend setting an alarm in your calendar to remind you to change your air filter every 3 months and should you happen to own rental property, you need to work out a system to ensure that those are changed as well. We recently saw a filter that had not been changed in 3 YEARS. That was a disaster!
If you have any questions about air filters or you want to know more about UV air cleaners, give us a call at 203-791-8089.