The job of the air filter is to keep dirt out of your HVAC (Heating Ventilation And Cooling) system. Consider the air quality in your environment every day during air pollution and the dust that clogs daily to the HVAC equipment during housekeeping. Imagine the proportion of accumulated grim if you did not clean the air filter during a year. That could be preventing your AC from functioning well and making it blow an unpleasant odor in the room. That is why it is taking longer to freshen your indoor temperature while you are having to pay more expensive electricity bills.
When your AC filter gets clogged, dirt starts mixing in the air conditioner, inflicting wear and tear on the components. Beware! The quicker the wear and tear, the sooner you are approaching a breakdown and repair costs. Also, consider the amount of time you will have to spend in uncomfortable temperatures in the event of such circumstances!
According to ENERGY STAR, you should do some maintenance monthly during peak season. You have the choice to either call the service guy every month or you can handle it yourself if you know how to clean the AC filter.
Locating your AC Filter
You will be delighted to know that it is an easy job to change the AC filter. Before you begin, you should check where it is located. In some AC it is easily found in the front after unscrewing and removing the front cover. However, in some more recent AC models, you will have to search for it. Worry not, the user manual will show you.
For most ACs, the filters are found in the return air duct. This is the one that sucks the hot air into the air handler system. Larger systems have multiple air handlers and return air ducts which may take you some time to find.
In the case of AC with an inverter, the ducts are the same. The air filter could be located in or near the blower system. If so, the job becomes easy as the filter is in the bottom front of the furnace. You will be able to see the filter without having to open anything. Else, you will need to unscrew the metal panel on which is marked FILTER on the top front of the blower.
If you still cannot find it, you may ask the HVAC service guy. Simply ask him to show you where is the filter located and how to remove the old filter to insert a new one.