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

October 07, 2015

One of the most routine concerns that we hear about at Chief / Bauer Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in Champaign is dusty air filters. They might seem like a very insignificant piece of the overall home comfort puzzle, but the role they play in helping us control comfort is a lot greater than most homeowners notice. Regardless if it is cooling season or heating season, having a dirty air filter can cause a number of concerns for your heating and AC system.

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

  • Diminished airflow. This is easily the greatest problem you’ll notice when your home’s air filter is very 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 working harder due to a clogged air filter, you also run the chance 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 probability if your air filter goes unchanged 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 all the time. When your system short cycles, it could overheat or break down from the added work, which could end up causing damage to your system.

In addition to these, you can also expect:

  • A shortened equipment lifecycle
  • Reduced energy efficiency
  • Decreased air quality
  • More dust and debris
  • Lack of comfort

If you’re not sure when you last switched out your air filter, it may be a good time to do so in order to get around any potential damage that might come with a filthy 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 we have, give Chief / Bauer Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning a call at or schedule an appointment online.

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