When and How to Change Your Furnace Filter

December 01, 2015

Taking care of your furnace can help more than you’d think in the period in between furnace service appointments. One of the easiest, and essential, ways to maintain your furnace is in changing your furnace filter. Having a clogged air filter may contribute to a number of negative issues for your heating and cooling system, its efficiency, and ultimately, how much your energy expenses are month after month.

So what goes in to determining when you should replace your furnace filter?

  • Type of filter: the two most common filter sizes are 1 inch and 3 inch filters. 1 inch filters normally need to be switched out every month and 3 inch filters ought to be changed every three months, depending on the recommendations of the filter maker.
  • Home habits: if you have pets in your home, it could make sense to switch out your filter more often due to pet dander. If you have someone in the house that suffers from allergies or asthma, think about switching out your home’s air filter more often to help with their symptoms.

Now you’re likely wondering how to change your furnace filter. More than likely, this will differ depending on what furnace you have, but normally: 

  • Open or pull off the air filter panel close to the bottom of your furnace to expose an open compartment.
  • On the top of that open compartment is where you’ll see your furnace filter resting on two metal brackets.
  • There will be a bit of space to move your filter back and forth that allows you to bring down one end of the filter and pull it out of the compartment.
  • When installing the new filter, look at the perimeter of the filter for an arrow that indicates the air flow direction, to be sure you’re installing the filter in the right direction. In the majority of cases, the arrow should point towards the main part (or top) of the furnace. 
At Chief / Bauer Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we’ll swap out standard one-inch furnace filters as part of our regular furnace service Precision Tune-up or PLUS Maintenance Agreement service. Give us a call today at or schedule an appointment with us online.