Ways to Know When It’s Time for a New Air Purifier Filter
The air in our homes can be filled with allergens and other harmful particles released into the atmosphere.
Air purifiers help remove these particles but will eventually need a filter change when they get clogged up with impurities.
But where to start?
Through this article, you’ll discover:
So how would you know when to change your air purifier filter?
This article will discuss this question and give you some tips on knowing when it’s time to change your filter.
Why Should You Replace Air Purifier Filters Regularly?
Air purifiers are designed to maximize their effectiveness by removing as many particles from the air as possible.
This includes allergens1, bacteria, and other harmful substances that can cause illness when entering someone’s lungs or eyes.
When an air filter becomes clogged with these impurities, it will no longer remove them effectively, which means you won’t get as much protection against pollutants in your home environment.
How Often Should You Change Your Air Purifier Filter?
The frequency of when a person should change their filter depends on three factors:
What type of filter is being used, how often the unit is running, and whether or not there have been any major changes in the household (i.e., pets, smoking, etc.).
For example, suppose you’re using a washable filter and have the unit running every day in a household with pets that recently installed new carpeting.
In that case, it’s likely your air purifier will need to be changed more often than someone who has an ionizer2 model.
How Can I Know When My Filter Needs Replacing?
Some people may not realize their filter needs to be changed until they notice a decrease in the air purifier’s effectiveness.
If you notice that your unit is no longer removing particles effectively, it might mean it’s time to change or need more frequent use of the machine.
Other signs that your air purifier filter needs replacing:
- Reduced performance from normal; especially since an increase in dust and other allergens has been present recently
- You can smell odors coming out of the vents, even when running at higher speeds
These signs could indicate that there have been changes in your home environment or what type of filtration system you’re using. It would then likely be time to replace the air purifier’s filter.
Do All Filters Need to Be Replaced?
Some air purifiers will have a permanent or washable filter that never needs to be changed.
These filters typically require cleaning, which can be done using hot water and detergent every month.
It’s important to know what type of filtration system you’re using before purchasing an air purifier because they are not all created equal.
It’s also recommended that people follow the owner’s manual for their specific machine to determine when it might need more frequent use or replacement.
So What Frequency Is Best?
It depends on several factors; here are some general rules for determining when it’s time to change your filter:
Default Indoor Air Quality
The air in your home will be cleaner if you have a HEPA filter3 running for at least 12 hours each day.
The more time the unit runs and the less dust or allergens hanging around to clog up an air purifier’s filters, the quicker it’ll need to be changed.
However, this doesn’t mean those with adjustable speed settings should run them constantly because it can put unnecessary strain on your machine.
Live in an area where there has been construction or remodeling going on recently.
Changing your filter sooner might also be necessary as these changes cause increased levels of particulates floating about, which could get caught inside a clogged-up filter.
Frequency of Usage
The more often your air purifier is being used, the more quickly it will need to be changed.
If you’re running an ionizer model all day long, then a filter change might not be necessary until after six months of use.
If you’re using a washable or permanent filter and have been running your machine daily for about 12 hours with no changes in a household environment, likely, they won’t need changing for at least three-six months.
The quality of your water can also have an impact on how often you’ll need to change a filter.
If you live in a city with high levels of air pollution or are using well water, it might be necessary for filters to be changed more frequently than someone who lives near the ocean and has clean drinking water coming out of their tap.
The type of filter also has an impact on when a replacement might be necessary.
If you’re using a HEPA, or High-Efficiency Particulate Air filter, then it’s likely that this will need to be replaced every 12 months as the lifespan is limited due to the finer particles these filters catch and what they are used for indoors.
If you have pets in your home and recently got new carpeting installed, then it’s likely that your air purifier will need to be changed more often than someone who has an ionizer model.
It depends on many factors about how frequently one needs their filter replaced, but most manufacturers recommend changing them around once per year, if not sooner with heavier usage.
General Filter Replacement Schedule
The following is a general timeline for how often filters should be changed:
- Permanent filters will only need to be cleaned once a month with hot water and detergent.
- HEPA or High-Efficiency Particulate Air Filter should be replaced every twelve months if they run for the majority of each day. Otherwise, six months is enough since these types of filters work harder than others.
- Washable/reusable filters should also be changed after 12 months but can last up to 24 depending on frequency use and if there have been changes in a household environment.
- Ionizer models might not require changing until around six months depending on how often it’s being used and which type of filtration system it’s used, as well as any other factors specific to the user such as pets or new carpeting installed.
- Air purifiers with activated carbon filters4 should be changed every six months.
- Air purifiers with electrostatic filters should be changed every 12 months.
Tips for Making Sure Your Filter Lasts as Long as Possible
- Replace filters in the spring to avoid allergy season5.
- Change filters when you change your air conditioner filter or furnace filter, which should be done at least twice a year for best results and maximum cleanliness.
- Keep pets out of rooms where there is an air purifier running as they will track more pet dander into the room on their paws, and it can cause clogs over time if not cleaned up promptly after being brought inside.
Tips for Avoiding Clog Build Up When Replacing Your Filter
It’s important to take care of your machine by changing its filter regularly.
Still, some tips that might help reduce the chances of build-ups are keeping animals off furniture where the unit is located, cleaning any debris from around machines, and ensuring adequate airflow throughout the room.
How Much Should I Spend on an Air Purifier Filter Replacement?
Replacement filters can range from around $20 for a washable filter to over $250 for more expensive HEPA models.
What if I Use My Air Purifier More Than 12 Hours a Day?
If you’re using your machine for over 12 hours a day, it’s likely that the filter will need to be changed sooner.
If this is the case, then replace filters every six months instead of once a year.
However, if there have been any changes in the household environment such as pets or new flooring installed within those six months where replacement was recommended, then change again at the one-year mark even with heavy usage and no other factors involved.
Is There a Way to Prolong the Life of My Filter?
Since most filters will need to be changed at least once a year, there isn’t much you can do about prolonging their lifespan.
If your machine is used heavily and frequently throughout the day, then it’s likely that this will shorten the time before needing replacement from 12 months to six or even three months depending on usage.
What Happens When I Don’t Replace My Filter?
When not replaced regularly, eventually dust particles will become stuck within the unit which could cause overheating and fire hazards.
It could also damage the machine itself, which is an expensive repair if it occurs on a pricey model.
Changing the filter in your air purifier is important for maintaining high air quality, but how often should you replace it?
The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the size and type of your home.
Someone living in a small apartment with two or three cats may need to change their filters more frequently than someone who has five dogs living in a large house.
But no matter what kind of person you are, these general guidelines will help you know when it’s time to change your old air purifier filter for a new one.