What Happens When You Don't Change Your Furnace's Air Filter

October 07, 2015

One of the most routine problems that we encounter at Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in Albany is filthy air filters. They may seem like a very tiny piece of the whole home comfort puzzle, but the role they play in helping us control comfort is a lot bigger than most homeowners recognize. Regardless if it is cooling season or heating season, having a clogged air filter can cause a host of problems for your heating and AC system.

So what exactly happens when you neglect to swap out your air filter? Here are a just a handful of the side effects you could encounter:

  • Diminished airflow. This is easily the biggest issue you’ll note when your home’s air filter is severely clogged. The longer the air filter goes without being swapped out, the more dirt, dust and other particles build up. Of course, this prevents air from passing through the filter as it should, meaning your system is working significantly harder to provide you with the same amount of air.
  • Frozen coil. If your system is operating harder because of a dirty air filter, you also run the danger of having the cooling coil freeze inside of the system, because it’s working overtime to leave you with cool air.
  • Total loss of cooling or heating. This is also a possibility if your air filter goes unattended for months and months on end. In essence, you will have worked your system so hard that something quits working or wears out and needs to be replaced or serviced.
  • Short cycling. Short cycling means the heating and cooling system turns on and off more than it should. When your system short cycles, it may overheat or break down from the added work, possibly causing damage to your system.

In addition to these, you can also expect:

  • A shortened equipment lifecycle
  • Decreased energy efficiency
  • Lower air quality
  • Increase in dust and debris
  • Lack of comfort

If you’re not sure when you last swapped out your air filter, it may be a good time to do so in order to avert any potential damage that may come with a clogged air filter. If you don’t know where your home’s air filter is located or you simply have a question about the variety of air filters available, give Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning a call at or schedule an appointment online.

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