As a homeowner, it can be easy to forget that the HVAC system in your home needs to be cared for regularly. One particular component that requires a lot of attention is the air filter. When this filter is clean, your HVAC system will be able to work efficiently and at full capacity. If this filter becomes clogged or dirty, however, this can harm the comfort and air quality in your home.

Dirty filters can often lead to insufficient airflow, increased levels of dust, and higher energy bills. Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to replace HVAC filters — all you need to do is follow a few simple steps.

Now, you might be sitting there and asking yourself, “How do I change my HVAC air filter?” If you’re feeling confused, rest assured that Keefe’s is here to walk you through the process. Let’s discuss the five steps in detail below.

How Often Should You Change Your Air Filter?

Learning how to replace HVAC air filters isn’t as complicated as many homeowners think it will be. Of course, you may still have questions about this maintenance task. More specifically — you might be wondering how often you should change your air filter.

As a general rule of thumb, you should replace the filter once every 30 days. Keeping to a regular routine such as this can keep your HVAC system running smoothly and help you avoid scheduling an emergency AC repair in New Orleans. However, it’s crucial to note that many factors can influence how frequently you change the filter. Every home will have different needs.

Take the quiz below to see how often you should replace the filter inside your home:

How to Replace HVAC Air Filters

As the name suggests, the air filter in your HVAC system keeps dirt, dust, and other debris from circulating throughout your air. This important component can protect your furnace and air conditioning against excessive wear and tear. When you remember to replace it on a routine basis, you can extend the life of your HVAC unit — saving yourself money and time in the long run!

But how do you change your HVAC air filter without the help of a professional technician? The great news is that this maintenance task is easy for homeowners to complete by themselves. Plus, depending on the equipment you already have on hand, the entire process of replacing the air filter shouldn’t take longer than a few minutes.

1. Turn Off Your HVAC Unit

First and foremost, you’ll need to shut off the HVAC unit before you can change the filter. You should turn off the unit directly, but you also might want to shut it off at the thermostat and breaker as an extra precaution.

Can you change your HVAC air filter when the unit is still running? No — this would allow harmful dust and dirt to flow inside the unit, which can cause irreparable damage. Turning off your unit is an important step that will ensure your safety and protect your HVAC system.

2. Locate & Remove the Old Filter

The filter in your HVAC system can be located in various different places depending on the type of unit you have. This filter could be located in the air handler, return air register, or both.

When learning how to replace HVAC air filters, it’s crucial to realize that every system will have different needs and specifications. If necessary, consult the user’s manual or do a quick inspection of your unit to track down the location of the access panel.

You’ll need to remove the access panel in order to access the filter. From here, you can simply remove the old filter from where it currently sits — but keep track of the arrow on the filter as you do so. This will come in handy later. Also, remember to clean up any dust and debris if you find any.

3. Purchase a Filter Replacement

Once you’ve successfully removed the old filter, hang on to it — don’t immediately throw it out. This old filter should have dimensions printed on it that you can use to purchase a replacement. If you don’t find any specified dimensions on the filter frame, it’s an excellent idea to measure the height and width. Writing down these measurements will make it easy to find the right size filter at your local home improvement store.

It can be difficult to find the right air filter for air conditioners if you don’t have the exact measurements handy. There are many different types, brands, and dimensions to choose from — and the last thing you want to do is buy the wrong one.

So now that you have all the necessary equipment, how do you change your HVAC air filter once you’ve purchased the replacement? We’ll go over the easy process in the step below!

4. Install the New Filter

Do you remember removing the old filter? You will essentially follow a similar process when you insert the replacement — just reversed. The new filter will have arrows on the sides of the frame. As you insert the new filter, make sure that these arrows are pointing in the same direction as the airflow going into the unit.

When learning how to replace HVAC air filters, remember that there’s no reason to rush. Double-check your work, making sure everything is aligned correctly and facing the right direction, before moving on to the final step in the process.

5. Switch the HVAC Unit Back On

Once the new air filter is secured in place, you can go ahead and place the access panel back on the unit. Then, proceed to restore the power to the unit; check to make sure that the power is turned on at the breaker as well.

Congratulations, you’ve now successfully completed the replacement process! Although you didn’t know how to replace HVAC air filters before this, you now have the tools and knowledge needed to get this simple maintenance task done. Your air conditioning and heating systems will thank you.

Schedule HVAC Services With Our Professionals

“How do you change your HVAC air filter?” While this can be an intimidating question to ask, you may be pleased to find out that the replacement process isn’t overly complicated. Simply follow the steps listed above.

If you need help replacing your air conditioner or furnace filter, don’t hesitate to reach out to Keefe’s. We’re proud to help residents all throughout the area keep comfortable with our HVAC solutions. Our team provides dependable New Orleans air conditioning services — among many others.

Contact us for more information about our services!

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