Why You Should Change Your Furnace/AC Filter

Please wait while the video loads...
About This Video
It may be one of the easiest, but most-neglected home maintenance items, but changing your air filter can save you money in the near and long term.
Rate This Video
Very PoorPoorFairGoodVery Good
Overall Rating (23)
CommentsComments on "Why You Should Change Your Furnace/AC Filter "
Do you keep an eye on your furnace or AC maintenance, or do you let the pros do that for you? Tell us about it below. 


Your first name, last initial and location will be displayed with your comment.
margie d. from Hopedale, MA on 10/26/2009 at 06:35 AM MT
Report Abuse
you can also put the date on the out side of the filter so you know when you last did it and then make sure you mark your calendar as soon as your done when it i s time to do it again. always buy extra when you go shopping for it. I always buy 4 for the yr. and this way i know when it needs to be done cause I mark the boxes when they should be done the next time Margie D.
Thumbs Up / Thumbs Down 4 of 5 Liked this Comment
Charles S. from Jarrettsville, MD on 10/29/2009 at 09:58 AM MT
Report Abuse
Great tips! One minor thing. When you mention the air moving from the filter, in air conditioning mode, you say it then goes through the compressor. It actually goes through the evaporator. Another great tip is to install an air filter gauge. They are inexpensive and can quickly pay for themselves by either preventing throwing out a perfectly good filter, or by saving your blower motor from laboring too hard due to a dirty filter. Generalaire makes such a device. With shipping I paid $25.00. It simply measures air plenum pressure as the filter gets dirty. It is very easy to install. I remotely mounted the gauge where I can easily see it as my air handler is in the attic. Now I do not have to rely on "guessing" when to repkace a filter. Manufactures do not say to replace "every" 90 days, they sugeest replacing "up to" 90 days. In my case, the blower runs less in the Fall and Spring and more in the Winter and Summer. The MERV rating of the filter is also important to consider. The higher the number, the better it filters. If your system is not set-up for a high MERV filter, don't use the higher number. Usually a MERV 8 is more than sufficient.
Thumbs Up / Thumbs Down 4 of 6 Liked this Comment
mark s. from Woodridge, IL on 01/30/2010 at 10:12 PM MT
Report Abuse
I use MERV 8 filters and replace on 4-month intervals.  I was told by my HVAC engineer if I do not use MERV 8 filters, to use the cheapest filter I can find.  He said that marketing in stores such as Lowes/Home Depot try to sell you high-end "allergy catching" filters.  He said these just "choke" the airflow in the system.  He said the main purpose of the filter is to protect the internal components, such as blower wheel, and furnace coils.  He said its air quality properties are secondary. <br /> <br />Also, I run my blower 100% of the time year-round.  My HVAC engineer said it keep are circulating through the home even if the A/C or furnace burners are not running.
Thumbs Up / Thumbs Down 7 of 8 Liked this Comment
Henri J. from Decatur, GA on 01/03/2014 at 09:50 AM MT
Report Abuse
I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me. Psalm 77:1 I am renting this house and the manager says its my responsibility to have the filter change.
Thumbs Up / Thumbs Down Did you like this comment?
Henri J. from Decatur, GA on 01/03/2014 at 09:50 AM MT
Report Abuse
I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me. Psalm 77:1 I am renting this house and the manager says its my responsibility to have the filter change.
Thumbs Up / Thumbs Down Did you like this comment?
Video Transcript for "Why You Should Change Your Furnace/AC Filter "
David Lupberger on Why and How to Change Your Furnace/AC Filter: Hi, I'm David Lupberger with ServiceMagic.com. Today we are going to talk about a simple home maintenance task that any homeowner can do, but by and large they don't do because they forget about it. I'm speaking about changing your furnace filter. So we're going to go through about 3 or 4 steps on how you can do this easily and quickly.
Lupberger: Number one: find out where your air handler is. It's usually right next to your furnace. There some kind of access panel. And honestly you'll see; this is the air handler going into the furnace. And as I reach in, the filter is right there. And on every furnace it's something similar like this. So, you'll see there's an arrow because the air flow comes in the air handler through the furnace in the winter and then in the summer, if you have an air conditioner once again the air is being moved by the air handler through this same box and moves through the compressor to cool the air. But I'm going to make a mark on the air handler. Now this arrow is just a simple reference reminding me of the air flow when I install the new filter, I install the new filter correctly. Let me show you what I mean.
Lupberger: Remove the old filter and this is what gets covered with dust and dirt. And this is why I want to replace this every 3 months because this is part of the air quality in your house and a good filter, let me show you what I recommend. Don't buy the least expensive filter. There are 3 or 4 different brands. This is mid range and you'll see this particular filter will help capture pollen, dust, animal dander, lint and even plant spores. So let's go ahead and install the actual filter. You'll see the filter has two sides. And I want to make sure I install it correctly so I'm going to look at this filter and look at that airflow. That was that arrow I talked about. I want to make sure that air flow arrow matches the arrow in the air flow handler. I'm going to slide it back in the same way I that I took the other one out. You'll see the two arrows match.
Lupberger: So the furnace filter is in place I'm going to put back the access door and remind you to do this once every 3 months. If you do this the fan in your furnace actually doesn't work as hard because the filter is clean and this also affects the air in your house; less dust less pollen: just a healthier place to live. And one more suggestion: make sure that you get your furnace serviced, by a professional, once a year because they can look at your furnace and make sure that it's running efficiently, that there is no leaks and that by simple servicing you are going to extend the life of your furnace in general. This is how you and take care of one of the major systems in your house.
Ideas & Inspiration (34 videos)
Play How Much Does Solar Cost? Part I
How Much Does Solar ...
David Lupberger is installing solar panels ...
Comments 18
(4:44)   
Play How Much Does Solar Cost? Part II
How Much Does Solar ...
David Lupberger is installing solar panels ...
Comments 13
(3:35)   
Play 'Green' Paint is More Than Just a Color Choice
'Green' Paint is More ...
Brandi LeMae of VaST Architecture goes over ...
Comments 2
(2:43)   
Play 'Green' Flooring Options
'Green' Flooring ...
Everything from carpet to hardwood. Learn ...
Comments 4
(2:35)   
Play Learn How to Green Your Countertops
Learn How to Green ...
Looking for an upgrade to your kitchen? ...
Comments 1
(2:44)   
Play Increase Your Home's Curb Appeal
Increase Your Home's ...
It's the simple things that we overlook. In ...
Comments 1
(2:33)   
Play Getting a Pro for Your Air Conditioner
Getting a Pro for ...
When should you have a professional check ...
Comments 1
(1:27)   
Play Low-Flow Lawn Watering
Low-Flow Lawn ...
Check out two forms of low-flow irrigation ...
Comments 0
(3:28)   
Play Why Hire a Landscaper?
Why Hire a ...
Landscaping's simple, right? Seems like you ...
Comments 0
(1:20)   
Play What Are the Benefits of Xeriscaping?
What Are the Benefits ...
Xeriscaping is a way to bring beautiful ...
Comments 0
(2:16)   
Play Three Tips for your Flower Garden
Three Tips for your ...
If you have a nice flower garden out front ...
Comments 6
(3:26)   
Play Expand Your Home with a Deck
Expand Your Home with ...
David Lupberger shows how building or ...
Comments 9
(03:29)   
Play 10 Projects That Bring More Bang for the Buck
10 Projects That ...
David Lupberger goes over the projects that ...
Comments 13
(02:52)   
Play Garage Remodeling
Garage Remodeling
David Lupberger has some good advice about ...
Comments 2
(02:15)   
Play Keep Your House Warmer and Your Checkbook Heavier
Keep Your House ...
Some things you can do yourself, but others ...
Comments 2
(04:25)   
Play How To Save on Energy Bills
How To Save on Energy ...
David Lupberger has valuable tips on making ...
Comments 5
(01:54)   
Play Installing Your New HDTV and Home Theater
Installing Your New ...
Are you sure you installed your Hi-Def TV ...
Comments 6
(02:42)   
Play Finishing Your Basement
Finishing Your ...
Finishing your basement could mean adding ...
Comments 7
(03:08)   
Play Give Your Home a Facelift
Give Your Home a ...
Whether you're selling your home or not, ...
Comments 5
(03:09)   
Play Is Your Neighbor's Grass Greener?
Is Your Neighbor's ...
Take the mystery out of watering, ...
Comments 8
(02:58)   
Play Bathroom Remodeling Ideas, Tips
Bathroom Remodeling ...
David Lupberger reviews some trendy bathroom ...
Comments 10
(02:53)   
Play Kitchen Design Trends in Kitchen Remodeling
Kitchen Design Trends ...
David Lupberger wows us with the latest ...
Comments 1
(4:26)   
Play Home Organizing Tips for Garage & Home Office
Home Organizing Tips ...
Over-cluttered garage? Messy home office? ...
Comments 6
(02:53)   
Play Cost vs Value Remodeling Ideas
Cost vs Value ...
David Lupberger reviews the top 5 cost vs ...
Comments 4
(04:00)   
Play Hanging Outdoor Christmas Lights
Hanging Outdoor ...
With the Holidays comes elaborate outdoor ...
Comments 2
(2:09)   
Play Man Caves & Man Rooms
Man Caves & Man Rooms
Man caves and man rooms are in hot demand as ...
Comments 25
(03:06)   
Play Home Winterization Tips, Winterizing Your Home
Home Winterization ...
David Lupberger reviews his home ...
Comments 1
(03:12)   
Play HOA Problems & Complaints
HOA Problems & ...
Having HOA problems? Your HOA complaints ...
Comments 106
(03:10)   
Play Luxury Master Bedroom Suites
Luxury Master Bedroom ...
Add some pizzazz to your master bedroom by ...
Comments 4
(03:59)   
Play Your Neighbor's Messy Yard
Your Neighbor's Messy ...
Have a bad neighbor? Your neighbor's messy ...
Comments 5
(02:57)   
Play Outdoor Kitchen Ideas & Custom Outdoor Kitchens
Outdoor Kitchen Ideas ...
Outdoor kitchen ideas come to life as David ...
Comments 2
(03:36)   
Play Hiring a Moving Company & Finding Movers
Hiring a Moving ...
Hiring a moving company might seem like an ...
Comments 1
(06:02)   
Play Home Remodeling Projects & Tips
Home Remodeling ...
Knowing what to expect will keep your ...
Comments 0
(02:46)   
Play Home Inspection Tips & Problems
Home Inspection Tips ...
David Lupberger offers some home inspection ...
Comments 64
(04:29)   
Do-It-Yourself (24 videos)
Play How to Replace Shoe Molding
How to Replace Shoe ...
Shoe molding is the wooden molding placed ...
Comments 2
(2:52)   
Play The Right Way to Touch Up Scuffed Wall Paint
The Right Way to ...
Walls can get scuffed up and nicked over ...
Comments 5
(2:20)   
Play How to Keep Your Dryer Working Its Best
How to Keep Your ...
Some folks only clean out their dryer's lint ...
Comments 10
(1:32)   
Play How to Stop a Toilet from Flooding Your House
How to Stop a Toilet ...
The old "open the reservoir tank" trick is ...
Comments 3
(1:30)   
Play Electrical Problems? How to Reset Your Breakers
Electrical Problems? ...
Ever had a hair dryer stop working? It may ...
Comments 0
(0:51)   
Play How to Replace a Sprinkler Head
How to Replace a ...
It's not as hard as you think (well, it ...
Comments 0
(2:08)   
Play How to Replace an Exterior Light Fixture
How to Replace an ...
See how to replace an outdoor light fixture. ...
Comments 0
(2:55)   
Play Don't Stop at Stopping Your Mail
Don't Stop at ...
David Lupberger shows you how to keep your ...
Comments 9
(1:08)   
Play Quick Tip -- You Can Save Your Favorite Lamp
Quick Tip -- You Can ...
In this short video, learn how you can save ...
Comments 2
(1:10)   
Play How to Change a Light Switch
How to Change a Light ...
ALWAYS MAKE SURE THE POWER IS OFF! That's ...
Comments 4
(2:48)   
Play How to Tape and Finish Drywall
How to Tape and ...
Learn how to turn your drywall into a real ...
Comments 3
(3:32)   
Play See Why Deck Maintenance Is a Must
See Why Deck ...
Think that your wooden deck is maintenance ...
Comments 3
(2:52)   
Play Quick Tip -- Protect Your Basement from Water
Quick Tip -- Protect ...
This quick tip shows a cheap and easy way to ...
Comments 2
(0:56)   
Play How to Paint Exterior Wood Trim
How to Paint Exterior ...
Need to do some painting around the house? ...
Comments 1
(4:21)   
Play Why You Should Change Your Furnace/AC Filter
Why You Should Change ...
It may be one of the easiest, but ...
Comments 5
(3:25)   
Play How to Extend the Life of Your Garage Door Opener
How to Extend the ...
Learn how easy it is to maintain and extend ...
Comments 2
(1:57)   
Play How to Save Money by Checking Your Insulation
How to Save Money by ...
Insulation isn't just for winter. You could ...
Comments 1
(1:48)   
Play How to Apply Texture to Drywall
How to Apply Texture ...
It's true-- you can texture walls yourself ...
Comments 0
(2:29)   
Play How to Choose The Right Picture Hanger for Drywall
How to Choose The ...
You don't want to use too small of a picture ...
Comments 0
(3:08)   
Play Don't Hang Your Ceiling Fan Without Proper Bracing
Don't Hang Your ...
If you're hanging your own ceiling fan, ...
Comments 1
(02:32)   
Play How to Repair a Leaky Toilet
How to Repair a Leaky ...
A running toilet wastes water and drips all ...
Comments 5
(06:11)   
Play See What Happens When Gutters Get Clogged (Video Demonstration)
See What Happens When ...
Clogged gutters can have devastating effects ...
Comments 2
(01:55)   
Play How to Patch Drywall
How to Patch Drywall
It's not as hard as you think! Home ...
Comments 3
(02:33)   
Play How to Prep & Paint Exterior Siding
How to Prep & Paint ...
There's more to painting than matching a ...
Comments 2
(03:05)   
Working With Contractors 101 (18 videos)