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How to Change Your HVAC Air Filter

The HVAC air filter is critical for preventing dust from settling on delicate system components where it could potentially cause damage. A filter with a higher efficiency rating removes even smaller airborne particles to clean your indoor air.

As your HVAC filter traps pollutants, it starts to become dirty and clogged. This blocks airflow, reducing efficiency and possibly causing the system to overheat. To prolong the lifespan of your furnace or air conditioner, change the air filter every one to three months or as recommended by the manufacturer.

Not sure how to change your HVAC air filter? Follow these tips.

Choose the Right Air Filter

The easiest way to tell the different filters apart is to compare the MERV rating.

  • MERV 1 – 4 is the simplest option. These are one-inch disposable filters made of biodegradable paper or a similar material.
  • MERV 5 – 8 includes pleated filters that provide a bit more filtration power. Some may have an electrostatic charge to help collect smaller particles without restricting airflow.
  • MERV 9 – 12 describes wider pleated filters with more superior filtration capabilities.
  • MERV 13 – 16 includes electronic air cleaners designed for people with sensitive respiratory systems.

In most cases, your best option is to choose a mid-efficiency filter in the MERV 5 – 12 range. This results in above-average filtration without straining your HVAC equipment.

Change the Air Filter When Needed

With the right replacement filter in hand, it’s time to change out your old one. Follow these steps for the best success:

  • Turn off the HVAC system.
  • Find the air filter slot and open the door.
  • Remove the old filter and wipe up residual dust with a damp rag.
  • Take the air filter out of the package and inspect it for damage.
  • Follow the directions printed on the filter to ensure you install it the right way (many will have an arrow).
  • Once installed, make sure there are no gaps around the filter frame. This could mean you purchased the wrong size.
  • Secure any levers, gaskets, or seals that hold the filter in place.
  • Turn the HVAC system back on and observe the filter for a moment to make sure it stays in place securely.

Schedule HVAC Services in New Jersey

If you notice a problem with your HVAC system while replacing the air filter—such as bent fins, excessive dust buildup, or moisture intrusion—contact Arctic Air Conditioning, and we’ll come take a look.

Testimonials
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”We always have great service with Arctic Air. They are fast, dependable and a pleasure to deal with. The technician, Sal Delre, was outstanding, understanding and so helpful! Special thanks…”

- Navin Pramanand
5 Rating |

”Thank you so much Jaime! Now we have heat. Arctic Air is highly recommended, they came right away when I called them to fixed my furnace.”

- Chona Trinidad-Petzold
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”Artic has been our HVAC company for years. Totdsay's annual visit was special thanks to Kyle the technician/service specialist. AMAZING!”

- Jim Mc Connell
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”I️ had Connor from Artic come out and give me a price along with talking me through the whole process. The installers were great and did a terrific job. We…”

- Darren Ghaffari
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”Sal provided outstanding service. We scheduled a tuneup on our furnace and he was pleasant as was any of the staff we came in contact with. Very easy company to…”

- Michelle Hermelee
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”Had my heating and air conditioning unit installed by Arctic almost 6 years ago. I also use them twice a year for the unit tune up. I have never had…”

- Rochelle Polesuk
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”Arctic Air is one of the best companies around. I've tried other companies but no one compares to Arctic. They are always on time and provide the best, most thorough…”

- Donna West
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”Sal was awesome!!! Thorough, informative, helpful, and extremely nice. I highly recommend Arctic Air!!!”

- Valerie Deantonio
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”Excellent, fast reliable service. Have been a customer for over 20 years and ave never had a problem. Would definitely recommend!”

- Robert Bendetson
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”Our service person was Dan who arrived promptly to work on our heat pump, which was not preforming well. Unlike other service techs from other companies he thoroughly analyzed the…”

- Nancy G.
5 Rating |

”Our service person was Dan who arrived promptly to work on our heat pump, which was not preforming well. Unlike other service techs from other companies he thoroughly analyzed the…”

- Nancy Goldstein
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”Just replaced my furnace, AC and H/W heater with Arctic Air. The Elite team of Jim, Kevin, Joe, Michael and Brady were skillful, knowledgeable, reliable, considerate, efficient and as neat…”

- Deborah Sbarra
1 Rating |

”Brian from Artic air came to my house to give me a HVAC replacement quote and never sent quote to my email. I followed up twice on phone and once…”

- Mrunal Shah
5 Rating |

”I'm very pleased with the service provided by Arctic Air Conditioning. They did everything they said they would do as stated in the contract. Very professional workers! I will definitely…”

- Marcia Black
5 Rating |

”great service every year - a little maintenance goes a long way”

- Ryan Fitzgerald
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”Arctic Air is the best HVAC company! Their techs, especially Jesse, are so nice and extremely professional. I’m so glad I chose them to install my Lenox system in 2010…”

- Sandra Kuschuk
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”I can't say enough about the team we had come out and help us. We had a 70 year old house with a rigged ac/furnace system. Nothing about it was…”

- Brian Easley
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”Christian recently came to our house to install a part and we were very satisfied with his work. He is very professional and personable. He did a great job. Herb,…”

- Arlene B.
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”Excellent and professional service. My tech Jesse was friendly and personable. I highly recommend Arctic Air and Jesse.”

- Sy Wodakow
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”Jesse was so professional and very nice. We had maintenance done on our heater and he fixed a man nor issue we had and did not leave until everything was…”

- Stephanie Pollack
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”They are extremely courteous and professional.”

- Teresa Barba
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”Very pleased with Jesse's service to our furnace.”

- matt
5 Rating |

”Kyle was professional and polite. Work was done in a reasonable time and looks fine.”

- Daniel Ostrowski
5 Rating |

”Jesse was prompt, courteous, knowledgable and got the job done.”

- John Sandstedt
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”Kyle was knowledge and courteous...he gave me history about my unit and facts... a good job overall!”

- Jack S.
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”Always good customer service Arctic Air; Jesse was on-time and did a great job.”

- Leon Paley
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”The team that installed our new central air was very professional and polite. They did a excellent job. The price was reasonable. Highly recommended!”

- Joseph Burek
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”Called Arctic because my heater wouldn't turn on. Office staff is awesome, actually tried to troubleshoot over the phone before sending someone out! Technician came out and could have told…”

- Linda Angley Mirek
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