March 11, 2016
Furnace filters are designed to keep dirt and debris from entering the blower of your furnace, which in most homes is the primary source of heat. Most people check and change their furnace filters once a year, but the truth is, you should be checking it more often than that.
Checking and changing furnace filters is an easy task and can be completed at home without the help of a professional. The job usually takes about half an hour, or less, to complete.
At Precision Plumbing, we have a Melrose Park heating contractor with extensive experience in furnace repair and replacement, and wanted to share some insight into changing your furnace filter. Below is a how-to on checking and changing your furnace filter in your home.
- When To Check Your Filter: While most people check and change their furnace filter once a year, checking the filter once a month will help you stay proactive in furnace maintenance. The filter needs to be changed once you can no longer see light shine through the fibers. Replacing a filter regularly will help reduce the amount of dust and debris that can get into the blower, and prolong the life of your furnace.
- Beginning the Installation: Turn Off the Furnace: Although our actual step on is more of an idea of when to check in on your furnace, this step should be the first thing you do before doing any work on the furnace. Shutting off the furnace is for your safety and will keep it from turning on while your hands are inside the machine. Additionally, turning off the fuse to the unit is also a good idea for a second tier safety step to make sure nothing turns on while you’re working.
- Locate the Service Panel: The service panel is the “doorway” into the furnace. You need to remove or open this panel to get to the filter inside.
- Locate the Filter: The filters are usually located insight the furnace near the intake/outtake blower fan. To remove the filter, gently slide it out of place. The filter should slide out easily. There should be an arrow on the filter with signifies which way the air flow is, make note of this so when you replace the filter you have it going in the same direction.
- Replace/Clean Filter: If you have a filter with a wooden edge, it’s likely a replaceable filter. Find out the exact model of the filter and purchase a new one to install. If the filter has a plastic edge, it may be a reusable filter. If this is the case, gently vacuum the filter and clean it with water. Make sure it is completely dry before reinstalling.
- Reinstall the Filter: Reinstalling the filter is as simple as sliding the filter back into place. Just make sure you have the air flow direction arrow (mentioned above) going in the right direction, otherwise your filter will be blocking air instead of allowing it through. Close up the service panel and turn the furnace back on and you’re in business.
Changing a furnace filter is a pretty easy task, and an easily be completed by a homeowner. However, if you have any furnace questions or concerns in the Melrose Park area, call Precision Plumbing and our Melrose Park heating contractor will help you sort them out.