When you take good care of your air conditioner, you can add years to its operating life and help keep your home energy efficient. One of the best things you can do to keep your cooling system running smoothly is to choose the right air filter and change it regularly. Read on to learn what you need to know about the central air conditioner filter in your home.

What does your central air conditioner filter do?

Your air filter is responsible for protecting your cooling system from the large particles in your air. When air from your home is pulled into the return duct, it passes through your filter before it enters the air conditioner. This filter acts as a strainer for airborne particles; the air can pass through, but the particles are left behind on the filter.

How do different central air conditioner filters affect the performance of your cooling system?

Air filters come with different MERV ratings according to how good they are at blocking out particles. Although it might be tempting to buy an inexpensive fiberglass filter, it’s important to know that low-performance filters can reduce the efficiency of your air conditioner. When more particles can get through the filter, they can build up on your evaporator coil and reduce its ability to absorb heat from the air. This makes it more difficult for your air conditioner to effectively cool your home.

What happens when your central air conditioner filter gets dirty?

As time goes on, the particles that attach to your filter build up more and more. This leaves less room on the filter for air to pass through, which makes your air handler work harder to compensate. As a result, your air conditioner uses more energy to cool your home. You can fix this problem by cleaning or changing your filter (depending on the type you have installed) once a month.

If you have any questions about your central air conditioner filter, or if you’d like a cooling system serviced or installed in your home, contact Jerry Kelly Heating & Air Conditioning, your St. Louis area heating and cooling company.

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