Becoming a homeowner is exciting, but it comes with a lot of new responsibilities that you may not be prepared for after a life of renting. Taking care of repairs and maintenance for your home systems is something that is usually handled by a landlord or property manager when you’re renting, but you’ll be responsible for your HVAC system when you own your house. You may not realize it, but HVAC maintenance is necessary if you want to stay both safe and comfortable at home. If you want to learn more, read on to learn about four effects that a dirty air filter will have on your house.
1. Dirty Ductwork
A quick search for “effects of dirty air filter in house” will give you an overview of what to expect when you don’t clean your filter on a regular basis, but let’s go over some of the most common ways that a dirty air filter will affect your home environment. When your air filter isn’t changed regularly, it will spread dust and other contaminants, rather than trapping them as it’s supposed to. Clogged filters will dirty your ductwork over time, in addition to leaving a lot of dust throughout the rest of your home. When you clean your system, make sure you’re thorough, and wipe down your fan blades.
2. Unpleasant Odor
Another effect of a dirty air filter is that it can make your home smell musty, stale, and unpleasant. When your filter is dirty, your HVAC system will produce weaker airflow. Weak airflow won’t be strong enough to circulate air throughout your home properly, which can make bad smells linger. Proper ventilation and air circulation are essential if you want to keep your home feeling and smelling fresh.
3. Poor Air Quality
One of the biggest problems associated with a dirty air filter is the impact that it will have on your home’s indoor air quality. Many homeowners don’t realize how important air quality is, but there is a wide range of health risks that are associated with exposure to polluted air. Poor air quality has been linked to heart and lung problems, including coronary artery disease, emphysema, respiratory infections, stroke, and cancer. It can also exacerbate the symptoms of conditions like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. This is particularly dangerous for children, the elderly, and those who are currently pregnant.
4. Increased Utility Bills
Dirty filters make your system operate much less efficiently, and your system will have to work much harder to heat or cool your home. That means your utility bills are likely to noticeably increase if you don’t change your filter for an extended period of time. One thing you can do to help reduce your energy costs is to install a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats are Wi-Fi-enabled devices that are compatible with other types of home automation. Most programmable thermostats also use an algorithm to learn from your habits so that they can maintain your desired temperature at home with as little energy use as possible. This can make a significant and noticeable difference in your monthly utility bills.
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As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why you should prioritize HVAC maintenance. Experts recommend changing your filter at least once every 90 days, but many homeowners prefer to change their filters on a monthly basis for peak performance and energy efficiency. When you leave a dirty filter in your air conditioner, you’re risking exposure to allergens, contaminants, and other types of pollution, in addition to reducing your overall quality of life at home. It’s true that homeowners usually have a lot on their plate, but you should always make time to take care of your HVAC system.