When and How to Change Your Furnace Filter

December 01, 2015

Caring for your furnace can help quite a bit in the months in between furnace service appointments. One of the simplest, and critical, ways to care for your furnace lies in changing your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter may contribute to a variety of unfavorable issues for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy expenses are every month.

So what goes in to consideration when you should switch out your furnace filter?

  • Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters usually need to be switched out every month and 3 inch filters should be replaced every three months, based on the recommendations of the filter manufacturer.
  • Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it might make sense to switch out your filter more often as a result of pet dander. If someone in your family has allergies or asthma, contemplate changing your home’s air filter more frequently to help with their symptoms.

Now you’re possibly wondering how to swap out your furnace filter. Obviously this will vary depending on what furnace you have, but normally: 

  • Open or take off the air filter panel around the bottom of your furnace to expose an open compartment.
  • On the top of that open compartment is where your furnace filter is resting on two metal lips.
  • There will be a small amount of space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to remove one end of the filter and take it out of the compartment.
  • When putting in the new filter, check the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that shows you the air flow direction, to be sure you’re installing the filter in the proper direction. In nearly all cases, the arrow should point to the main part (or top) of the furnace. 
At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we’ll change out standard one-inch furnace filters as part of our regular furnace service Precision Tune-up or PLUS Maintenance Agreement service. Give us a call today at or schedule an appointment with us online.