Do Air Filters Really Need to Be Changed? A Comprehensive Guide

Changing your home's air filter regularly is essential for maintaining good indoor air quality and keeping your HVAC system running efficiently. Learn when & how often you should change your home's air filter.

Do Air Filters Really Need to Be Changed? A Comprehensive Guide

In general, most air filter manufacturers and HVAC companies recommend changing the air filter every 90 days or 3 months. That may vary depending on the location of your home, if you have pets, and the age of your system and equipment. A general rule of thumb for pleated air filters (such as those manufactured by FilterBuy) is to replace the filter every 90 days. As the filter traps more dirt, dust, and allergens from the air, its efficiency decreases.

Without a clean air filter, your HVAC unit works harder and is prone to more breakdowns. Compared to other DIY home improvement projects, changing air filters is a quick and painless process that can be done in less than an hour. However, many homeowners are unaware of how often air filters need to be replaced, leaving their system vulnerable to damage. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that studies show portable air purifiers (or air purifiers or disinfectants) can achieve small improvements in cardiovascular and respiratory health by reducing indoor pollutants.

Some models indicate when it's time to wash, vacuum, or replace filters. In general, a HEPA filter needs to be changed every year, pre-filters last 30 days, and carbon filters can last three to six months. Clean permanent filters every three months and replace them if they are damaged. Our guide will save you hours of online research in search of the best air purifier for your room. Unfortunately, most homeowners forget to change air filters for several months.

This can lead to significant increases in energy bills and other maintenance costs, as well as health problems for home occupants. Because of this, you should invest in a better quality air filter or be prepared to change it every few weeks (especially if you use an industrial grade fiberglass filter). The most popular filters are usually panels that slide in a gas oven or in a central heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) unit. If there is a visible layer of dirt that covers most of the filter surface and that is thick enough to hide the filter material itself, it is a sign that the filter has been in the HVAC system for too long. Air filters trap pet hair, dust, and other irritating particles so that the air conditioning system returns fresh, clean air to your home. We expect drivers in most cases to spend more than a year, at least, and probably more than two years between air filter changes, depending on conditions and mileage.

However, it will put unwanted pressure on your HVAC system, resulting in poor air quality and air circulation. Typical recommendations range from every 30 days for cheaper fiberglass filters (which often don't do a good job of filtering), to 6 months for high-end pleated filters. In addition to filtering particles filtered by MERV 8 and 11, the MERV 13 can filter kitchen smoke, smog and virus carriers. It doesn't matter if your air conditioning or HVAC system is used to heat or cool your home; the circulating air eventually has to pass through the filter. Any use will cause a certain amount of dirt to be trapped in the air filter - after all, that's its job. If the dirty air filter is completely covered with dust and dirt, it is a good idea to change the filter even if it has not reached the end of its recommended life.

How often you change the air filter will depend to a large extent on the expected service life of the device.


Changing your home's air filter regularly is essential for maintaining good indoor air quality and keeping your HVAC system running efficiently. The frequency with which you should change your filter depends on several factors such as location, pet ownership, age of system/equipment, type of filter used etc. In general, pleated filters should be changed every 90 days while HEPA filters should be changed annually. It's important to remember that if you don't change your air filter regularly enough then you could be putting unnecessary strain on your HVAC system which could lead to higher energy bills as well as health problems for home occupants. If you're unsure about how often you should be changing your home's air filter then it's best to consult with an expert who can advise you on what type of filter would best suit your needs as well as how often it should be changed.

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