If you want to save money and the health of your furnace and air conditioner, there are numerous things you can do and we recently explained one key method with a hard start capacitor. However, maintenance is another important step, especially your air Filter. All things considered, your air filter plays a pivotal role in your HVAC system but there are pros and cons to both one-inch and five-inch filters and this is what we are going to explore today!
Watch The Video Above With Dave And Tony Showing The
"Technical" Differences Between Filters
One-Inch Air Filters - Every day, we work hard to make your heating and cooling systems more efficient so we like to play around and test what works as well as what doesn’t. Recently, we did an in-depth comparison between one-inch and five-inch air filters and the results were extremely interesting. Before heading into it, we should note that the recommended pressure in a system is around 0.5 and without any filter at all this number sits at 0.1; this is a great score but of course it means that nothing is protecting the system from dirt and debris.
With a clean one-inch filter, the pressure increased to around 0.35 and this is closer to the recommended 0.5. However, the filter soon builds up with dirt and the system has to work harder and harder just to keep working. Above all else, this means that it uses more energy to keep going and that it will regularly overheat in its efforts. In fact, we put a dirty filter into the system and we immediately noticed an increase in noise because the fan was working overtime. In terms of pressure, this increased to 0.7 which is well above the manufacturers recommendation and well above where you want it to be if you want your air conditioning and heating system to run efficiently and last long.
With even a small layer of dust and dirt, it draws more power than previously and this overdrives the motor. According to experts, these filters should be replaced a minimum of every three months or so. If not, a loss of air cleaning efficiency and motor overheating occurs because there just isn't enough surface area to be efficient. Shockingly, many of us leave our filters untouched for well over a year and perhaps even longer.
Five-Inch Filters - On the flip side, a five-inch air filter has a much larger surface area and can therefore stay more efficient for a longer period of time. During our test, we found a clean five-inch filter to score very well but here is the main benefit of choosing this type of filter; it only gets more air filtration efficient as time goes on without any negative impact on your system. Whereas one-inch filters struggle after a couple of months, five-inch filters get more efficient and don’t need to be replaced for around a year.
Additionally, neither the fan or the motor has to work as hard which means that the issue of overheating is eliminated. Over time, you can save money as the unit will be more efficient and you will also extend the life of your heating and cooling system thus reducing the need for a replacement any time soon. If you want to save money and keep your HVAC system, the five-inch filter will keep you on the right path. What’s more, you can have it installed and then forget about it for another year. Barring a major issue, you shouldn't have to keep your air conditioner and furnace on your mind at all. With the one-inch filters, you need to have the filter replaced at least four times each and every year!
The only cons to a five-inch filter is the cost of the filter is higher (not really though since you replace it once a year) and you will need to have your system modified to accept the larger filter (well worth the investment though).