How Often You Should Change Your Furnace Filter

Everything You Need To Know About The Furnace Filter In Your Home

Everything You Need To Know About The Furnace Filter In Your Home

Believe it or not, many people think that changing a furnace filter is an intimidating task. There are a lot of questions about the process, such as how often should you change it, and sometimes people just want to know what a furnace filter is and what the system does.


Toronto Furnace Repair is one of the top heating and cooling repair companies located in the province’s capital city. We offer a variety of services and have years of experience in the industry.


To provide you with the answers you deserve, our team of professionals has gathered information on everything you need to know about the furnace filter in your home.

What Is A Furnace?

Often located in the basement, a furnace is an HVAC system used to provide heat to the entire structure of a home. Furnaces are the major component of a central heating system, whereas air conditioning contributions to the cooling system.

What Are Furnace Filters?

A furnace filter, also referred to as an air filter, will act as a barrier to protect your furnace’s blower fan from dust and debris. Furnace filters improve the indoor air quality of your home or commercial building. In order to do this, the filter traps dirt particles, which improves the air quality of your home. Dust and other things like pet dander are not recirculated into the air.

Why Do You Need To Change Air Filters?

In addition to lowering your energy bills and preventing your furnace from working harder, changing the air filters on your HVAC system is a job that is required. Filters are found on both heating and cooling units and regular maintenance of the filter will allow the air handler in your home to last longer. Preventing high energy bills, bad air quality and clogging are the top reasons why filters need to be replaced.
There are different types of furnaces

What Are the Different Types Of Furnace Filters?

When homeowners change their air filters, they may wonder which filter options are the best for their home. In order to ensure you are getting the indoor air quality you need, you have to choose the right furnace filters for your HVAC system. Here are the different types of furnace filters and the benefits of each.

1. Disposable Fibreglass Filters – These are the most commonly used filters due to the inexpensive price-point. A fibreglass filter stops large particles and dust from clogging your HVAC system but is it not effective enough for a home that houses that have pets or people who live with asthma or allergies.

2. Disposable Pleated Filters – This is another popular option for your HVAC system that is made of cotton or polyester. Like the previous filer, it is an affordable option and is effective in removing mites and spores. However, the frequency of filter changes is much higher in order to prevent the clogging of your furnace.

3. Disposable Electrostatic Air Filters – These standard filters are made of cotton or paper fibres. It is able to capture smaller, and more potentially harmful, particles. While it can be affordable, the price does increase if you require custom-size filters. The materials of this filter make it a perfect option for smokers and those with pets and/or allergies.

4. Permanent Electrostatic Air Filters – Made of electrostatic fibres, these furnace filters are removable and machine-washable. Unlike the disposable options, this air filter can be taken out and cleaned. If you choose a permanent air filter, you are only required to change your filter every 8 years.

5. High-Efficiency Pleated Filter – This filter is made from pleated synthetic cotton and is attached to a metal grid. This stops leaks from happening and it will filter out the smallest of elements. This option is good for people that live with respiratory illnesses or autoimmune diseases. This type of filer is commonly seen in hospitals because of its efficiency. However, it is quite costly and may not be widely available for all HVAC systems.

Most of these filters can be found at your local hardware store

Find out how often your filter should be changed

How Often Should A Furnace Filter Be Changed?

How often to change your filter depends on the surface area and home environment of your home, as well as a few other factors. On average, an air filter needs to be changed after 3 months or every 90 days.

Factors To Consider In How Often An Air Filter Should Be Changed:

Pets and dust are two of the main reasons why you will need to change your filter every 30 days

Are You A Pet Owner?

Pets are an integral member of the family, but pet hair may require you to change your furnace filter more often than every 90 days. If you have a pet that sheds heavily, you will benefit from a replacement cycle of every 30 days instead. This ensures that the air quality of pet homes stays clean and your HVAC system continues to function efficiently.

Do You Have Allergies?

An allergy sufferer will also need to change your air filter every 30 days, as opposed to a frequency of 3 months. This is because dust can build up and enter the indoor air, which can change your air quality. This will have a more direct impact on those with allergies and/or asthma.

What Is Your Air Filters MERV Rating?

A MERV rating stands for the “minimum efficiency reporting value”. The values range from 1 to 16, but you want a filter that has a rate of 6 to 12 to ensure the best air quality. Anything lower than a 6 does not protect against airborne particles such as viruses and fumes. A filter with a rating higher than 12 is designed for hospital use. A higher-rated filter will have smaller holes so that less matter can enter, whereas a lower-rated filter will have larger holes. Interestingly enough, a filter with smaller holes tends to clog more quickly and will have to be changed more frequently.

A clogged filter will cause an HVAC unit to work harder to draw air into the system. This will shorten the lifespan of the furnace.

What Is The Climate Where You Live?

Sometimes you may only need to change your furnace filter every 6 months. You have to take into account general air quality and the temperatures of where you live when determining filter changes. If you live in a warmer climate where you only use your furnace sparingly but use an air conditioner more often, the former HVAC system may only need to be changed every 6 months.

Did you know regularly changing your furnace filters can keep indoor air quality high and energy costs low?

Let us show you how to change your filter

How To Change Your Filter

Now that we have addressed how often to change the furnace filter in your home, you may be wondering how to complete the actual task.


If you notice your home is getting dustier than usual, it could be a sign that it is time to change the filter. The filter is more often located behind a return air cent or in a slot on the HVAC unit itself.


You will simply need to locate the filter, and then remove the screws that are holding the filter in place. If the filter is located in a slot, you can simply pull it out. It is to be expected that the filter will be quite dirty. Have a garbage bag ready to ensure that debris does not fall or get into the area once the filter is removed. Once the furnace filter is in a bag, you can discard it with your regular trash. A filter is not recyclable or compostable.


Next, insert the new replacement filter into the empty slot. Either push it back in or screw it in place. Continue to monitor the home or building and replace the filter again when necessary.


The process of changing a filter is quite simple. But if you have any questions or any other concerns relating to an air handler, furnace or air conditioner, contact Toronto Furnace Repair today!

Did you know replacing a furnace filter can be completed in less than 10 minutes?

About Us

Toronto Furnace Repair is the city’s leading furnace repair company. We’re a full-service heating and cooling system provider that can clean, install and repair your furnace. With years of valuable experience in the furnace industry, our team proudly services residential and commercial properties in and around the Greater Toronto Area. We offer high-quality services at a competitive rate to customers and their homes. You can even rely on us for 24/7 emergency support. If you are looking for reliable, trusted and experienced solutions for your furnace maintenance issues, we are the right people for the job.

Contact Us

Whether you require regular maintenance or a one-time service, Toronto Furnace Repair is just one phone call away. Call or email us today and our team will be more than happy to provide you with guidance, service or any furnace solutions you may need. We are here for you for all your HVAC requirements. Check out our website for more details on the services we provide.
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