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What Happens to a Furnace or Air Conditioner When the Air Filter Isn’t Changed?

what-happens-when-furnace-or-ac-filter-isnt-changedA little bit of thought – and maintenance — goes a long way toward keeping your furnace and air conditioner running smoothly. Most of the time, however, we prefer not to think about these systems even though they are vital to our comfort and safety all year long. Perhaps that’s because we typically only think about them when they are not working – and nobody likes that! Replacing the air filter in your furnace or air conditioner, however, is necessary regular maintenance that helps you avoid a host of problems and repairs.

Not convinced? Here is a snapshot of what happens when you ignore the air filter.

Reduced airflow

The air filter works by trapping dirt, dust and other particles, keeping them out of your heating and cooling system, and consequently, out of your home. Over time, the filter becomes so full of debris that air can no longer pass through. This causes your system to work harder to adequately heat or cool your home – using more energy for the same result. That wasted energy comes straight out of your pocket in the form of higher utility bills.

Frozen coil

When the cooling coil works harder to cool your home, due to a clogged air filter, it can freeze inside the system.

Loss of cooling or heating

A dirty air filter makes your system work harder than necessary, day after day. The more the system is overworked, the more likely a part will break or wear out, causing the system to stop functioning properly.

Short cycling

Because dirty air filters make the system work harder for the same result, the system cycles on and off more frequently. This increases the risk of overheating or a breakdown that can cause serious damage to your system.

Dirty air ducts

Clogged air filters can no longer prevent all the dirt, dust and debris from getting into your equipment, and eventually collecting in your air ducts.

Shorter life span

Anything that makes your equipment work harder will shorten its useful life.

Less energy efficiency = higher energy bills

Dirty air filters make your equipment less efficient, which means you are paying more for the same amount of heating/cooling.

Increase in dust and debris

More dust, dirt and allergens make their way into your home.

Lack of comfort

The air filter plays a huge part in the effectiveness of your furnace and air conditioner. When it is neglected, you will be noticeably less comfortable as your systems no longer work consistently throughout your home.

Not sure how or when to change your air filter? IAQ can help. Call us today!

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