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

October 07, 2015

One of the most basic issues that we hear about at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in Cleveland is filthy air filters. They may seem like a very tiny piece of the big home comfort puzzle, but the role they play in helping us control 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 forget to change your air filter? Here are a just a couple of the side effects you could encounter:

  • Reduced airflow. This is easily the largest issue you’ll note when your home’s air filter is badly clogged. The longer the air filter goes without being switched, the more dirt, dust and other particles build up. Of course, this hinders air from passing through the filter as it should, meaning your system is working significantly harder to give you the same amount of air.
  • Frozen coil. If your system is operating harder because of a dirty air filter, you also run the chance of having the cooling coil freeze inside of the system, because it’s running overtime to give you cool air.
  • Total loss of cooling or heating. This is also a possibility if your air filter goes unattended 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 excessively. When your system short cycles, it could overheat or break down from the added work, which could end up causing damage to your system.

In addition to these, you can also expect:

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

If you’re not sure when you last swapped out your air filter, it may be a good time to do so in order to avoid any potential damage that could come with a filthy air filter. If you don’t know where your home’s air filter is located or you simply have a question about the variety of air filters available, give Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning a call at or schedule an appointment online.

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