Major consequences of not changing your air filter

Sep 27, 2019 | Blog, Furnace, HVAC Maintenance

All too often, people don’t give much thought into their heating and air conditioning systems until something goes wrong. Strangely enough, when something does go wrong (sometimes gravely wrong) the most common reason is that they failed to change their air filter in time.

To raise awareness and teach our customers about air filters, and how they work, we at Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air have compiled the following information. Learn what happens when you don’t replace your air filter as regularly as you should. 



Manufacturers make air filters out of fiberglass or pleated paper, and a cardboard enclosure encases them. Air filters are put in HVAC systems to act as a screen to stop contaminants and other particles from floating around in the air you breathe. They also stop these impurities from accessing vulnerable parts of the system. A few examples of the types of things these filters prevent from moving on through the air include pet dander, mold, dust, lint, hair, pet fur, bacteria, and more. 




That depends on the sort of filter you have and what is going on in your house. Depending on the sort of air filter you have, you will want to follow definite schedules to make sure the filter is always operating at its optimal performance. Most manufacturers advise for basic filters to be replaced at least every couple of months, but certain conditions could alter that schedule. 

For instance, you should change a filter in a regular home with no animals every three months. If you have an animal in the home, you should renew the filter every two months. For multiple pets, it needs to be replaced anywhere from every three to seven weeks, especially if someone in the home has allergies. Individuals in sole-occupant homes without animals can usually change filters once or twice a year without any issues. The same goes for those who have vacation homes that don’t get used often. 




When you don’t regularly replace air filters, they can smother your system. The accumulation of fragments and pollutants attach to the filter and act as a blanket blocking airflow. While the filter is intended to hold these small items, the buildup can produce a nearly impervious wall blocking the flow of all air. This clogging leads to a slew of issues for the entire HVAC system, some of which include:


Health Troubles 


If the air filter is clogged and cannot filter out pollutants as it should, those items can come back into the air you and your family breathe. Immediate problems, as a result, could include itchy eyes or throat, headaches, and more. If you still don’t replace the air filter and the issues keep up, the long-term impacts could include respiratory illnesses, possibly heart disease. Some experts say it can even cause cancer.


Costly energy bills


When your air filter gets clogged, air cannot flow through the system very well, if at all. This blockage overworks the entire system making it challenging for it to dispense heat or air where it is essential. This strain raises your utility bills since the unit is working harder. 


Poor Temperature Control 


Warm and cool air cannot sufficiently go where it is required when blocked up air filters make the system stress to create airflow. As a result, homeowners find some rooms can be too cold during the winter or too hot during the summer months. It’s like your system is spinning its wheels.


Furnace Failures


If the system is working too hard to go around and through blocked up air filters, it can trigger it to break down. If this happens, you’ll need to replace the whole thing, which can cost thousands, in some cases, more than $10,000. Air filters typically cost less than $30-$40, so they are simple to replace regularly compared to replacing the entire system, a mere fraction of the cost. 


Froze-Up Coils 


Evaporative coils help your air conditioner eliminate heat from the air to keep your home cool. They can freeze up if they are overburdened. With a clogged air filter, the air won’t flow over the coils properly, which makes them cease functioning and leads to a total system breakdown. Here yet again, the cost to prevent this costly problem is merely buying a new air filter every few months. Safeguard your HVAC system and your budget by changing the air filters on a routine schedule. 




If you have not replaced the air filters in your home lately, heed our warning! Your next move should be to find out which ones you require and change them ASAP. If you find your current filters look like nothing, not even air could go through them; it’s time to call an HVAC specialist. We can go to your home to examine the system and address any issues caused by the old filters, therefore avoiding additional problems down the road. 



For more information, or to schedule a money-saving visit from one of our reputable technicians, call Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air today at 614-490-7520, or schedule an appointment now at