Does Your HVAC Filter Need to be Replaced?
Do you recall the last time you replaced your central heating and cooling system’s filter? On average, this essential piece to the HVAC puzzle should be replaced approximately every 90 days. If not, an old, worn filter can bog down your indoor air quality and cause your system to work twice as hard — this will decrease energy efficiency and potentially shorten its lifespan.
Your current HVAC filter may be caked in dust, dirt, and various airborne particles, so here’s how to dispose of it in the most efficient way possible.
How to Properly Dispose of an HVAC Filter
Consider Using a Dust Mask and Disposable Gloves
Before removing your current filter from your unit, you may want to consider using a dust mask and disposable gloves — especially if you’re prone to sneezing and coughing, or have a pre-existing respiratory condition. The reason being is that there is about three months worth of airborne allergens that are trapped in your current filter. The minute the filter is moved, those allergens will go airborne once more.
Turn the Unit Off
As mentioned above, your current HVAC filter is packed in debris — whether those particles are visible on the filter or not. And the last thing you want is for your HVAC unit to turn on while you’re trying to replace the filter. To prevent this from happening, it’s essential to turn off your unit so you won’t have an unpleasant surprise on your hands (and in the air).
Remove the Filter
Once your unit is shut off, it’s time to remove the filter and dispose of it. The best way to avoid lingering allergens from going airborne is to carefully place your filter in a new garbage bag and seal it shut. Sealing the bag lessens the chance of dirt, dander, and debris from escaping and drifting throughout your home.
Dispose of the Filter
After you have successfully sealed your garbage bag, it’s time to place your old filter in a trash receptacle outside of your home. This is important because if you dispose of your filter in a garbage can within your humble abode, there’s a chance allergens within the filter can be re-released.
Replace the Filter
Finally, once you walk back inside your home, safely secure the new filter within your HVAC unit and turn the system back on. Once you're done, remember to add "change filter" to your calendar three months from now.