How Often Should You Change Air Filters


Does Your Air Filter Need To Be Changed?

Changing furnace and return air filters is critical to the proper performance of your HVAC system, not to mention your home’s air quality. Studies show that indoor air pollution is one of the top five environmental health risks? We know it’s the last thing on your mind, but this is really important stuff. Changing the air filters is not all that hard for most homeowners, but there are usually two challenges to actually completing this job:

  1. Knowing just how often to change your furnace or air conditioner filter.

  2. Remembering to change air filters when needed.

When To Change Your Air Filters

This is not a trick; simply put – when your air filters are dirty, change them. Choosing how often to change your air filters can depend on several factors:

  • Type of filter your A/C system requires

  • The overall air quality of your home

  • Pets – Birds, cats, dogs, hamsters (do you have one?), etc.

  • Number of occupants in the house

  • General air pollution in the your city or construction taking place nearby

For your typical 1″-3″ air filters, the manufacturer specs basically say to change them bi-monthly, which is in fact a great rule of thumb. However, general guidelines are not applicable to all. If you have to tolerate light to moderate allergies, you may need to upgrade the air filter or change them even more regularly than typical specifications. On the other hand, if you’re in a remote area, own a infrequently occupied home (like a vacation home) or an area where there are fewer cars around, replacing your air filters each year may be quite sufficient. Why do pets matter so much? They have a tendency to shed, which can clog your air filter fast. Clearly, the air filter is just doing its job by capturing pet hair and dander, but tremendously dirty filters can cause weak HVAC performance.

In summary:

  • Seldom used home or single occupant homes without pets or allergies: Change 6-12 months

  • Typical suburban home without pets: Change every 90 days

  • Add a dog or cat: Change every 60 days

  • Multiple pets or have allergies: Change every 30-45 days

Thermostat Reminder

Most thermostats will have a reminder to change your filter. This is based on time serves as a good reminder. Most thermostats are different when it comes to resetting this alert. Give us a call and we will try to help.

We have a wide array of air filter sizes in stock at Burleson Plumbing & Heating. Come by and pick up yours today or click “Request Appointment” button below to schedule a serviceman to do this for you.


Adam Burleson