Can a Dirty Filter Ruin Your AC?

A dirty air filter can have a significant impact on your air conditioning system. It restricts the flow of cold air, causing it to build up inside the unit and lower the internal temperature. This can lead to ice forming on the coils, and if your home has an HVAC system, it can stop the oven from heating. The dirt and dust accumulated on the oven air filter will restrict airflow, causing heat to build up in the heat exchanger. The air filter is located between the intake air and the HVAC system.

When it becomes clogged, it prevents air from circulating through the ventilation grilles. This means you won't have enough air to keep you comfortable, regardless of the season. Additionally, a clogged filter forces your system to use more energy to cool your home, resulting in a higher utility bill. It also causes significant wear and tear on your unit, leading to system failures long before breakdowns or repairs. ENERGY STAR states that “a dirty filter can increase energy costs and damage equipment, which can lead to premature failure.” The way an air conditioner works is by absorbing heat from the air in your home.

As the refrigerant evaporates inside the indoor condenser unit, the evaporator coil absorbs heat from the air blowing over that coil. However, if the air cleaner is too dirty, then the hot air is restricted, which can cause the coil to freeze. If you notice that some rooms are harder to cool than others, while others are constantly feeling cold, you'll want to check your air conditioner filter first. If it's too clogged with dust, dander and debris, then the blower has to work harder to get air through the blocked filter. If you leave it clogged for too long, you may experience a system-wide failure. Changing your air filter on a regular basis restores proper airflow through the ventilation system and helps keep your monthly utility bills low.

If your air conditioner uses a reusable air filter, you don't have to buy a new one every time you maintain it. To clean it, remove it from the unit safely and rinse it in a tub or sink with warm water. One of the purposes of an air filter is to filter out all microscopic particles such as dust, pollen, pet dander, bacteria, plant spores and mold, and even smoke. To keep your AC running efficiently for longer and avoid system-wide failure due to a clogged filter, make sure you change or clean it regularly.

Elisa Michocki
Elisa Michocki

Devoted tv junkie. Proud web maven. Lifelong tvaholic. Subtly charming social media fan. Incurable internet practitioner. Amateur beer geek.