When and How to Change Your Furnace Filter

December 01, 2015

Maintaining your furnace can help quite a bit in the months in between furnace service appointments. One of the simplest, and essential, ways to maintain your furnace is by changing your furnace filter. Having a dirty air filter could contribute to a number of negative problems for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much you’re spending on your energy bills each month.

So what goes in to determining when you should replace your furnace filter?

  • Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters normally need to be replaced every month and 3 inch filters should be replaced every three months, dependent on the recommendations of the filter company.
  • Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to switch out your filter more often because of pet dander. If you have someone in the house that deals with allergies or asthma, consider switching out your home’s air filter more frequently to help ease their symptoms.

Now you’re likely wondering how to replace your furnace filter. Obviously this will change depending on what furnace you have, but usually: 

  • Open or remove the air filter panel near the bottom of your furnace to expose an open compartment.
  • On the top of that open compartment is where you’ll see your furnace filter resting on two metal brackets.
  • There will be a small amount of space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to remove one end of the filter and pull it out of the compartment.
  • When adding the new filter, check the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to make sure you’re installing the filter in the correct direction. In most cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace. 
At McKinley Heating Service Experts, we offer membership plans that include swapping out standard furnace filters. Give us a call today at 780-800-7092 or schedule an appointment with us online.