How to Tell When Your Home Air Filter Needs to be Replaced

Learn how to tell when it's time to replace your home air filter and why it's important for maintaining good indoor air quality.

How to Tell When Your Home Air Filter Needs to be Replaced

It's important to keep your home air filter clean and in good condition in order to ensure that the air you breathe is of the highest quality. But how do you know when it's time to replace your air filter? A great way to tell if your air cleaner needs to be replaced is to hang a clean white sheet about 5 inches away from one of the vents for at least an hour. If the sheet turns gray, then it's time for a new filter. The grayer the sheet, the dirtier the filter will be. The most obvious sign that you need a new air filter is if the one you have is gray and dirty.

It's recommended that you take out the air filter and check it out at least every two months. If it looks dusty or dirty, then it's time for a replacement. In all cases, the oven filter should be dirty on the side where air enters the oven. If the air filters are dirty in some other way, it could mean that the oven isn't working properly or that the filter has been installed incorrectly. A new or clean air filter should be mostly white, but as dust and other particles accumulate in the filter, it will gradually turn gray or darker in color.

To determine if airflow has decreased, simply place your hand in front of the ventilation grilles. If your oven filter becomes dirty after a week, it's likely because there is a lot of dirt in the air in your home. Some air filters also contain an adsorbent which allows them to eliminate bad odors and various other gaseous contaminants. Whether it's summer or winter, all of the air that enters your home comes from outside and passes through a filter that removes large particles that could damage your unit if they aren't trapped. Replacing your air filter can save you money and ensure that your HVAC system is running at optimal levels. For outside units, you should replace or clean the oven filter no more than every three months.

Disposable air filters (which are usually placed in a cardboard frame) should not be cleaned and should be replaced when they become soiled. Most people don't think about their HVAC air filters very often, but it's one of the most important aspects of ensuring that indoor air quality is at its best. Your home is full of particles that need to be extracted from the air to keep it clean and breathable, and this is where an air filter comes in. If your system has a reusable air filter, all you need to do is clean it at least once every three months.