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The furnace is one of the most important parts of any HVAC system, and within it, the furnace filter is one of the most important components. The filter is what prevents harmful contaminants from entering your system as you breathe in air in your home, and it needs the right care and maintenance to operate properly.

At Whipple Plumbing, our specialists are here to help with everything from furnace repair to furnace installation. Let’s look at everything you need to know about your furnace filters.

Types of Filters

Furnace filters can either be disposable or washable, with most falling into the former category. These disposable filters are used for a specific period of time, then replaced as needed. Washable filters, on the other hand, can be removed and cleaned, then reinserted.

Disposable filter options include:

  • Synthetic media
  • Polyester
  • Fiberglass
  • Pleated media
  • Electrostatic
  • HEPA (high efficiency particular arrestance)

Filter Functions

The filter pulls contaminants out of the air that’s circulating in your HVAC system. Pollutants like dust, pet dander, dirt and mold spores are trapped by the filter as air circles through your heating areas, then passes through to the rest of your home. Not only does the filter keep the air clean, it keeps your heating and cooling units cleaner as well – removing contaminants before they hit these units causes less buildup of dirt and debris, leading to longer lifespans, less maintenance required and a lower energy bill.

Furnace Life Factors

The life of a disposable filter will depend on a few factors. These include efficiency ratings, concentration of contaminants in the home, presence of allergy or asthma sufferers, and HVAC system usage.

When to Change Filters

On average, here are some basic tips on how often to change your filters, based on the thickness of the filter in question:

  • 1-inch filter: 1-3 months
  • 2-inch filter: 1-3 months
  • 3-inch filter: 6-9 months
  • 4-inch filter: 6-9 months
  • 5-inch filter: 9-12 months
  • 6-inch filter: 9-12 months

To learn more about furnace filters or any part of your furnace or HVAC system this winter, speak to the pros at Whipple Plumbing today.