Some air filters — permanent and semipermanent models — can be cleaned as part of regular HVAC system maintenance and replaced for continuous use. A disposable air filter, however, doesn’t work the same way. At regular intervals, you must remove it from the HVAC cabinet, throw it away, and install a fresh filter. Disposable air filters shouldn’t be vacuumed or moistened. Learn some of the reasons these filters can’t be cleaned and reused in your HVAC system of your Savannah, Georgia, home.

Vacuuming a Filter Can’t Reach the Inner Fibers

As time passes, your air filter collects many contaminants, including dust, pollen, and dirt. The contaminant particles can get buried deep in the filter’s fibers, so a vacuum cleaner won’t extract all of them. The particles will create a barrier in the air filter and prevent air from passing through, which could damage your HVAC system or make it less efficient.

Wetting a Filter Can Encourage Mold Growth

Reusable filters can be washed and replaced. However, the disposable filters you use in your HVAC system aren’t made to shed water after they get wet. The moisture the filter retains can encourage mold growth over time, and your HVAC system might spread the mold spores throughout the rest of your home. Plus, wetting a disposable filter makes it far less effective, so you’ll see decreases in energy efficiency and indoor air quality.

Handling a Filter Can Damage Its Integrity

Some consumers attempt to clean their disposable HVAC air filters by shaking them outside or attempting to pick off pet hair, dust, and dirt. While these actions might seem like easy ways to save money and conserve resources, shakes or cleaning attempts can cause damage to the filters. If you tear a hole in the fibers or loosen the fiber density, your air filters cannot work as well as before.

Instead of cleaning a disposable air filter, throw it away and replace it with a new one. Alternatively, consider reusable filters that last years with regular cleaning. If your reusable filters don’t seem to be working properly in your system, consult the HVAC guidance and services of Byrd Heating and Air Conditioning. Call 912-373-8447 to schedule an appointment with one of the team’s qualified technicians.

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