With the various benefits to your health that having cleaner air in your home can bring, it’s a mystery why the majority of people are happy to neglect cheap and easy clean air practices. We’re not talking about getting a trained professional out every month to give your home the full work over, no, we mean the actions you can take to minimize the need for calling out the pros. Today we’re going to quickly go over the main problems a poorly functioning ventilation system can cause within your home and how one component, when properly maintained, can make all the difference.

One of the biggest offenders of a poorly functioning ventilation system is an old and tired air filter. The air filter of your system is a key component in providing clean air and whilst it can become dirty relatively quickly it’s thankfully easy and cheap to replace. If you’re not changing your air filter on time you may soon regret it, there are plenty of problems that can come up when you neglect this basic maintenance steps.


Home ventilation systems aren’t cheap and paying to get a trained professional out for a service can end up being quite costly. Any homeowner understandably wants to keep maintenance costs down to a minimum. Unfortunately, this frugal approach often manifests itself by causing a homeowner to shy away from small maintenance problems, problems which when left can cause much larger and expensive repair jobs. Sometimes, you have to spend a little today to save a lot in the long run, staying on top of all the small maintenance issues when they come up will serve you well later on.

An air filter becoming tired and dirty is a prime example of a small issue gradually growing into a costly expense. By neglecting the replacement of your air filter you’re increasing the stress on your system which ultimately effects its efficiency.

The extra stress you’re putting on your machine will cause two main issues, both of which are going to will cost you money.

The machine will still attempt to operate at peak efficiency, something that’s far more difficult when all the components aren’t pulling their weight. In an effort to still perform, certain components will over compensate causing them to quickly wear out. When a major part no longer works you’re going to have to call out the professionals, a call which will cost you not only the fee for the part that caused the issue, but also that of the now worn out component plus labour fees. To top it off, you’re also reducing the lifespan of the system by not performing regular maintenance, meaning you’re going to have to dip into your savings to buy that replacement machine far earlier than you intended.

When your system isn’t working efficiently it’s power consumption is going to increase. This isn’t going to make itself immediately noticeable, in fact, the first time you’ll probably be aware is when you receive your next, substantially higher electricity bill.

The short version of all of this is to change your air filter when it needs it. If you don’t you’re going to pay for extra professional servicing than is necessary as well as higher electricity bills for a machine that lasts half the time of a well maintained system.

Air Quality

When the primary function of an appliance has been compromised, what would you usually do? If there’s a light bulb that’s no longer lighting up a room, you’d change it.When there’s an air filter that no longer supplies clean, filtered air, do you replace it?

You may still think that even a dirty air filter is doing a good job of providing clean air. Throughout the life of the air filter it will be filtering all the pollutants that you don’t want to circulate within your house. These pollutants aren’t disposed of but are held within the air filter. Once the air filter has reached a certain saturation of pollutants it can no longer filter the air, it will in fact be pumping even lower quality air into your home. The air that passes through a dirty air filter won’t have any pollutants removed but will actually pick up extra dirt before being fed through the vents and into your home. Think of it this way, you wouldn’t get into a bath full of dirty water to get clean would you.

In neglecting the regular maintenance and replacement of air filters you’re placing yourself and your family at a much higher risk of developing various illnesses. You may think that it’s only those who have a pre-existing allergy who are going to suffer from poor indoor air quality. Whilst it’s true that allergy sufferers are at a higher risk, it doesn’t mean that the allergy free among us won’t experience any symptoms. The American Lung Association states that poor indoor air quality “can cause headaches, dry eyes, nasal congestion, nausea and fatigue.”

If the non allergy sufferers can develop minor allergies and illnesses from poor air quality what happens to those who already have a pre-existing allergy? Unfortunately there is the potential for those who are sensitive to any allergen to develop a more serious illness, in particular asthma. Whilst there’s still no solid understanding of the causes of asthma, studies have managed to understand a few of the sources. This article on the causes of asthma has three subheadings which focus on the illness developing from another allergy and another cause related to poor indoor air quality. Out of 10 subheadings explaining the causes of asthma, four of them are related to poor air quality.

These health risks shouldn’t be ignored. Anyone who suffers from an allergy can attest to the difficulties, discomfort and limitations it can apply to your life. The EPA estimates that we spend an average of 90% of our time indoors, and we’re willing to bet that the majority of that time will be spent at home. There’s also research that shows the level of indoor pollutants can be two to five times higher than when outdoors, sometimes reaching even higher than 100 times higher. It might not seem like a big deal, but having a good quality clean air filter can make a huge difference to your home life.

As you can see there are plenty of risks that can be easily avoided with the simple changing of your ventilation system’s air filter. It is going to cost you a small fee to buy replacement air filters but it’s going to be worth it. It’s a small price to pay, especially considering the benefits. An effective machine is going to cost substantially less in the long run not to mention the continued good health of your family. If these are the benefits of replacing your air filter once every three months, you’re definitely getting a good deal.

Image – darkday