Furnace Filters: All You Need to Know

Posted on: September 2, 2020

Can you run a furnace without a filter? Your furnace needs a filter in order to purify the air and make sure that the system runs smoothly. Using a furnace with a dirty filter or running it without one can cause a whole range of issues with your heating system, so make sure to learn all about furnace filters if you wish to keep your family safe and prolong the lifespan of your unit.

Unless you wish to deal with furnace issues in the middle of the heating season and rely on heating service in Murrieta far too often, you need to check your furnace regularly. Read on to learn more about why furnace filters are so important!

Can you run a furnace without a filter?

The simple answer to this question is no. While you can technically operate your furnace without a filter, doing so can cause serious harm to both your heating system and your health. Of course, your furnace is unlikely to break down after just one day of use without a filter, but prolonged use would certainly have a detrimental effect.

What will happen if you run your furnace without a filter?

Running your furnace without an air filter can lead to a great number of issues with your furnace. Here are some of the most common issues with using a furnace without a filter present:

  • Poor indoor air quality. Without a filter, all the harmful particles in the air will stay there. Breathing in poor-quality air for longer periods of time can cause allergies, asthma and other respiratory issues.
  • Particle buildup can cause malfunctions. The filter in your furnace is there to trap airborne particles and stop them from accumulating on the furnace components. Without it, all the debris and dirt will quickly build up and result in malfunctions and costly repairs.
  • Safety hazards. Particle buildup on your furnace’s components can create fire hazards, as well as lead to moisture and mold problems if left unchecked for too long.

Will a furnace run with a dirty filter?

Dirty filters are one of the most common culprits of furnace issues. In fact, a clogged filter can cause a wide range of problems with your heating system, both simple and complex. Here’s what a dirty filter can do to your furnace:

Inadequate heating

A filter that is too clogged with debris and dust will make it harder for the blower fans to push the air through. This results in a decreased airflow and uneven heating throughout the house. If you’ve realized that there are spots of hot or cold air in your home, check and clean/replace your furnace filter regularly.

Increased utility bills

The extra effort your furnace has to put in in order to keep your house warm with a dirty filter will naturally result in increased energy consumption. If you’ve noticed that your utility bills are higher than usual, a clogged filter might easily be the culprit.

Heat exchanger issues

Another common problem with dirty furnace filters is that they can lead to your heat exchanger cracking. This is because there won’t be sufficient air blowing over it, meaning that the excess heat might start building up inside the heat exchanger. This puts stress on the exchanger, causing it to crack and possibly allowing carbon monoxide into your home.

Unhealthy air

Your furnace filter is supposed to help control the dust and debris present in your home. If it’s clogged, it won’t be able to perform its primary function, allowing the germs and dirt to circulate throughout the air. This might be particularly dangerous for any family members who have respiratory issues such as asthma or allergies.

Furnace breakdowns

Since a clogged furnace filter will inevitably cause your furnace to overwork itself, it is very likely that some of its components will overheat and eventually break down. Unless you want to have to deal with furnace failures when you need it the most, make sure to check and replace/clean your filters each month.

Can you put a furnace filter in the wrong way?

Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for furnace owners to put in the filter backwards and create a series of issues with their furnace as a result. Putting in a filter in the wrong way will decrease the efficiency of your heating system and result in higher energy bills. Basically, an improperly placed furnace filter cannot perform its primary function, meaning that it will cause all the same issues that occur when you run your furnace without a filter.

Which way does the air filter go in a furnace?

If you want to prevent filter-related problems with your furnace, you should know how to properly insert your furnace filter. Follow these steps:

  • Remove the existing filter from the furnace.
  • Insert the new filter in the direction indicated by an arrow on the filter label. The arrow shows the proper airflow direction and should always be inserted facing the furnace and facing away from the return duct.
  • You can also draw the arrow on the furnace with a marker and indicate the filter size and the proper airflow direction for easier replacement.

Replacing the air filter regularly is essential for ensuring the optimal performance of your furnace. While the procedure is not exactly complex, it can be confusing if you’ve never done it before. If you have any doubts about using your furnace properly, you can always reach out to professional furnace technicians who can replace your filter for you and ensure that everything is in order.

Looking for heating services in Murrieta? Contact Action Air!

Will a furnace run with a dirty filter? Experiencing problems with your furnace? We can help! As the finest AC and furnace repair company in San Diego and Riverside County, Action Air Conditioning, Heating & Solar can take all your furnace-related worries off your mind, enabling you to visit the Santa Rosa Plateau with your loved ones without having to worry about your furnace breaking down.

Our seasoned technicians also deliver top-quality installation services so don’t hesitate to rely on them if you wish to save money by purchasing a new high-efficiency furnace. Reach out to us today!