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Furnace Filters

Can Furnaces Run Without a Filter?

While some people may think of furnace filters as nothing more than an air purifier, they are actually a necessary part of your heating setup. In fact, you should still use an air purifier if you're concerned about air quality. As any HVAC company will tell you, without it, your heater may not work well -- or at all!

What Heating Filtration Devices Do

As the name suggests, this device filters out debris. Not only does this mean that this debris cannot be blown into your home and breathed in by you or your family members, but it does not enter your heater, which can potentially lead to damage. A filtration device keeps your furnace pristine and maximizes the life of your heater. Without one, you would likely have to repair and replace your HVAC system more frequently. The cost would quickly add up.

If the filter becomes too full, perhaps because it has not been changed frequently enough, airflow decreases. Your furnace may not perform as well without enough air, and your home may be cold despite high energy bills. This can also cause a heater to overheat and shut down.

When to Replace Your Filter

You should check your furnace before the weather turns cold. An HVAC professional might also recommend monthly checkups when you frequently use your heater. Fortunately, it's easy enough to check without help from an HVAC company. You can open the access panel and take a look after shutting down the system. Here, you'll also see the type of filter (cardboard filters are single-use, while some have a reusable plastic frame) and size, which you'll need to know to buy a replacement. Reusable ones can be washed, dried, and replaced.

If you need to replace a cardboard filtration device, you simply remove it and insert a new one with the arrows facing the same direction as the previous one. These arrows indicate the direction of airflow. Even when filters are not completely dirty, replacing them can help your furnace run more efficiently and prolong the life of the device. Remember that no furnace will last forever.

Running a Furnace Without Filtration

While furnaces can technically run without filtration, you run the risk of doing damage to the machine the longer you do not use one. You may not have to see an HVAC professional as often when you follow directions, however.

For more information or to schedule a service appointment, call Robert Bair Plumbing Heating and Air today. We have the skills and experience to help with your problems.