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

October 07, 2015

One of the most common concerns that we come acress at Mountainwest Service Experts in Salt Lake City is dusty air filters. They may seem like a very small piece of the whole home comfort puzzle, but the role they play in helping us maintain comfort is a lot greater than most homeowners recognize. Regardless if it is cooling season or heating season, having a clogged air filter can cause a variety of problems for your heating and AC system.

So what exactly happens when you don’t remember to swap out your air filter? Here are a just a few of the side effects you might encounter:

  • Decreased airflow. This is easily the biggest headache you’ll recognize when your home’s air filter is severely clogged. The longer the air filter goes without being changed, 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 quite a bit harder to give you the same amount of air.
  • Frozen coil. If your system is running harder as a result of a filthy air filter, you also run the danger of having the cooling coil freeze inside of the system, because it’s operating overtime to give you cool air.
  • Total loss of cooling or heating. This is also a possibility if your air filter goes neglected 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 can overheat or break down from the added work, possibly causing damage to your system.

In addition to these, you can also expect:

  • A shorter equipment lifecycle
  • Decreased energy efficiency
  • Lower air quality
  • Increase in dust and debris
  • Lack of comfort

If you’re not sure when you last changed your air filter, it may be a good time to do so in order to get around any likely damage that may come with a dirty air filter. If you don’t know where your home’s air filter is located or you simply have a question about the various air filters we have, give Mountainwest Service Experts a call at or schedule an appointment online.

Contact Us