How Often Should I Change My Air Filter?


Can you remember the last time you changed your home’s air filter? Homeowners around the Bowling Green and Toledo, Ohio area do not have to change their air filter on the top of their “honey-do” list, but it should at least be on there! If you want to enjoy clean, fresh air, you should regularly replace your home’s HVAC air filter—especially if you have any pets!

When Should I Change My Air Filter?

The short answer to this question is to change the air filter every 30 days. However, this is a rule of thumb that doesn’t apply to everyone or fit every situation. In fact, 30 days is the most frequently you should ever have to replace your air filter. Most manufacturers will have a recommendation for your specific heating and cooling unit and often times you need to follow their timeline to maintain your manufacturer’s warranty. Always check your manufacturer’s warranty first, in all other cases, follow these guidelines to pinpoint exactly how often you should change your air filters:

  • Every 30 days. Standard air filters start to collect dust and other debris after 30 days of use. If you have more than one pet and/or severe allergies, plan to change your filter monthly. There is no harm in replacing your air filter more frequently.
  • Every 60 days. If you have a dog or a cat, it is recommended to change your filter every 60 days. Most dogs and cats shed, so plan to replace your HVAC air filter every 60 days. If you have more than one pet, or a larger dog, we suggest the 30 days change. The extra dirt and animal hair in your home make the filter clog up faster.
  • Every 90 days. Most filters are rated to last up to 90 days. If you and your family live in an “average” home in the Bowling Green, Findlay, or Toledo, Ohio area,  with no pets and no allergies, you can get away with stretching your filter to its maximum lifetime.
  • Every 6 to 12 months. In unusual situations, such as single-occupant or vacation homes, you don’t need to change the air filter as often. Plan to check it every few months, but you probably only need to change the air filter once or twice a year.

Why Should I Replace My Air Filter Regularly?

Improved air quality is only one of the benefits to regularly replacing your air filter. HVAC air filters keep pollution and debris out of your HVAC system. This is important to ensure that your system is running properly and efficiently. A dirty air filter will slow down the air flow making your furnace or air conditioner work harder. Other benefits to changing your air filter regularly include:

  • Energy savings! A clogged air filter overworks your HVAC system because it blocks airflow to and from your ductwork. It’s like trying to breathe through a straw!
  • Lower energy bills! Less energy consumption means a lower cost to keep your home at the right temperature.
  • Longer system lifespan! An overworked system doesn’t last as long as one that operates within its intended parameters. By changing your air filter, you help reduce stress on the air handler and motor, preventing premature system failure.

What Happens When I Forget to Change My Air Filters?

Not everyone makes changing their home’s HVAC air filters a priority. Some out of neglect and others are just unaware. When you don’t change your home’s air filter, it can become incredibly clogged with dust and debris. When you neglect your air filter the following can happen:

  • Your energy bills are higher every month.
  • Your HVAC system runs hotter and parts wear out faster.
  • You don’t get the most efficient use of the equipment you invested in.
  • Airflow decreases and your HVAC system can no longer keep your home as comfortable.
  • Indoor air quality suffers and your allergies get worse.

To learn more about changing your home’s air filter or repair services, call Kellermeier Plumbing & Heating today at 419-823-9143. From AC repair to furnace replacement, our certified technicians are on call in the Bowling Green, Toledo, and Findlay, Ohio areas.