Air conditioners work by intaking air, processing it, and then releasing it in a chilled state. Unfortunately, when ACs intake air, they also intake airborne contaminants, including everything from dust mites to mold spores to pet dander and more.
These contaminants eventually come to rest within the AC’s duct system, clogging it up and impairing the performance of the AC. Efficiency issues and increased wear and tear are the results.
There is something that helps mitigate this issue, however: the AC filter. This filter prevents a good number of contaminants from making it into the AC system, thereby preventing those contaminants from having a negative effect.
The thing is: AC filters don’t last forever. Once they get too dirty, they need to be replaced. Curious as to the basics of AC filter replacement in Fort Myers, FL? We’re going to tell you all about it below.
How to Replace an AC Filter
The specifics of replacing an AC filter are dependent on the AC system itself. That said, most AC systems work in the same general way. So, we’ll discuss this with that thought in mind.
First, locate the return vent that accompanies the AC. This is generally located in proximity to the thermostat. That said, it’s sometimes closer to the AC’s blower unit.
Once you’ve found this vent, loosen its attachments, and pull its cover off. The filter should be directly behind the cover.
Pull the filter out and set it to your side. Then, take the new filter and, taking into account the arrows printed on it, insert it into the spot that you just took the older filter out of. Note that said arrows should be pointing toward the duct.
Once the filter is in place, simply put the cover back on the vent and you’ll be good to go. It’s really as simple as that.
AC Filter Sizes
AC filters come in a wide variety of sizes. Some of the more common sizes include:
- 12 x 12 x 1
- 14 x 14 x 1
- 10 X 20 X 1’’
- 14 X 20 X 1’’
- 16 X 24 X 1’’
- 18 X 30 X 1”
- 16 x 25 x 4
- 20 x 30 x 1
- 20 x 20 x 1
- 16 x 25 x 1
- 20 x 25 x 1
- 20 x 25 x 4
- 16 x 20 x 1
How do you determine the size of filter that your AC requires? It’s really as simple as removing your existing AC filter and looking at the information printed on its side. This should give you the exact sizing.
If you can’t see the sizing information on your existing filter, you should be able to find it in your AC’s user guide. You should have this in your possession. If not, you can find it online by Googling the model name of your AC and then following it with the phrase “user manual”.
How Often Should You Replace an AC Air Filter?
Now, you might be wondering: how often should you replace an AC air filter? In most cases, every 2 to 3 months. That said, if there’s something in your home that increases the number of ordinary airborne contaminants, for instance, a dog that sheds often, you might want to make a change every month or so.
There are some signs you can look out for that will indicate the need for a filter replacement. These signs include the following:
A Hot Air Conditioner
One sign that you might need to replace your HVAC filter is that your AC unit is hot to the touch. Why would a dirty filter cause your AC to become hot? It has to do with the amount of work that the AC is being required to put in.
See, when the filter is entirely clean, the AC is able to run at max efficiency. Therefore, it puts minimal strain on its components and doesn’t overheat. When the filter is dirty, however, the AC is forced to work much harder than it would otherwise; this results in overheating.
A Higher-than-Usual Electricity Bill
Another indication that your AC air filter is dirty is that your electricity bill is higher than usual. Again, this has to do with the AC overworking itself as a means of overcoming energy efficiency deficiencies. These deficiencies are typically caused by a dirty air filter.
Now, rising energy bills could be indicative of other problems as well. However, seeing as the AC uses so much energy, it’s commonly an AC issue that is the culprit.
Check your air filter right now. If it’s dirty, you know what to do. If it’s not, you should look out for other factors that might be increasing your electricity usage, some of which could even exist within your AC.
Your Air Seems Dirtier
The last sign that you need to replace your AC filter is that your air seems dirtier. This stands to reason, as a dirty filter isn’t able to catch any more contaminants.
Therefore, it allows contaminants through at a higher rate. These contaminants enter the AC’s duct system and are then pushed out into the indoor air environment.
At best, this results in a feeling of stuffy and heavy air. At worst, it causes allergy symptoms to rear their ugly heads. Fortunately, the fix is simple: swap out your air filter!
Note that you can also supplement your air filter with more extensive air filtering devices.
Need Assistance With AC Filter Replacement in Fort Meyers, FL?
As you can see, replacing your AC filter is vital. Need assistance with AC filter replacement in Fort Meyers, FL? If so, we here at Florida Cooling Solutions are the people to see.
Our team of experienced and skilled HVAC technicians has replaced countless AC filters throughout Fort Meyers. As the top HVAC company in Fort Meyers, we’ll ensure that the job is done quickly and correctly.
Contact us now to get the ball rolling!