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Mack Morris Heating & Air Conditioning Blog

How a Dirty Filter Can Lead to Repair Needs


“Dirt don’t hurt” is an adage most people are familiar with. This isn’t always true, though. There are situations when dirt really can hurt, such as when it starts to mess with important things in your home.

Think of what happens to a computer that gets too dirty. The whole thing can break down! Did you know the same risk can apply to your HVAC system? This is why there is a filter that is made to protect your HVAC system from the ravages that airborne debris can have.

We have a question for you that is important to answer: when was the last time you changed your HVAC system filter?

The Role Your Filter Plays in Your Heater’s Function

The filter for your heating system sits within your return air filter. Its job doesn’t involve any movement but it is still important. The filter captures all the debris that is in the air entering your heater. This seemingly simple job has a big impact because, by preventing the intrusion of all that dirt, it helps your heater function effectively and efficiently throughout the season.

As a bonus, this same filter also helps protect your air conditioner in the summer season.

Why You Need to Change Your Filter

Leaving your filter in place for too long can lead to issues with your systems. This can include creating enough trouble to require a heating repair in Orange, VA to address it. A dirty air filter can increase strain on your heater, wearing parts down more quickly and leading to increased energy use too.

How Often Do You Change Your Filter?

If you haven’t changed your filter once since you started using your heater, we’d say that the sooner you change it out the better. After this though, we’d advise making a habit of checking and changing the filter every one to three months. If you have a reusable filter, the same rule applies—you just clean it off instead of swapping the old filter out with a new one.

The Steps to Change Your Filter

If you’ve never changed your HVAC filter then we understand that the prospect can seem intimidating. We promise that this is a simple and easy way to care for your heater (and air conditioner). Here’s a quick step-by-step guide to help:

  1. Locate your return air vent. This is usually a larger vent located near the system itself. You may have more than one in your home.
  2. Open the vent and take note of the sizing for your filter. You need to know the dimensions for the filter you’ll use to replace the old one.
  3. Once you obtain a replacement filter, carefully pop the old filter out and get the new one in place. Dispose of the old filter.

You can also talk to our technicians to have them show you where and how to change your filter. This is actually something that we take care of during a maintenance check and we are happy to show you the ropes!

We can’t control the weather outside of your home, but we can control the weather inside your home. Schedule heater maintenance or heater repairs with Mack Morris Heating & Air Conditioning.

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