Can a Dirty Air Filter Cause Your Air Conditioner Not to Cool?

Dirty or wrongly sized air filters can prevent an AC from working properly and cause costly repairs or even system-wide failure. Learn how often you should change your AC filter and other tips for keeping your HVAC system running efficiently.

Can a Dirty Air Filter Cause Your Air Conditioner Not to Cool?

An overheated air conditioner can be a sign that your AC filter is clogged. When the filter is dirty, the air conditioning unit will have to work harder to keep the room cool, putting more pressure on the system and causing it to produce a lot of heat. If the back of the unit is too hot, it's a clear indication that the filter needs to be replaced. If the filter is heavily soiled, you may feel warm air coming out of the back of the unit.

This is because a clogged filter forces the air conditioner to work harder to keep your house cool, leading to more frequent repairs and a shorter lifespan for the unit. To reduce this load, it's important to change your AC filter regularly. A clean air filter won't stop air from entering and leaving your unit, but a dirty one will restrict the flow of cold air, causing it to build up inside the air conditioning unit and lower the temperature. If the air filter becomes clogged during the summer cooling season, this cold air buildup can cause icing on the air conditioning coils or evaporator, reducing its ability to remove heat from the air and eventually causing it to fail.

If you're wondering why your air conditioner works but doesn't cool your house, it could be due to a dirty or wrongly sized air filter. As the AC filter becomes clogged with dirt and debris, system efficiency plummets, making you pay more for less cooling energy. In addition, the air conditioner blower has to work even longer than normal, which can lead to internal damage. To get optimal results, you should change your filter every one to three months on average, but check it monthly during times with high pollen counts or excessive dust. If you're still not sure how often you should change your filter, here are some additional tips.

Keeping your air conditioner well cared for and running efficiently for longer doesn't just involve changing dirty filters - there are many other ways you can do this. Dirty filters make your AC run at a lower efficiency, meaning it won't cool your home as well as it should and can end up costing you more money in the long run. Don't let a dirty air conditioner filter stop you from feeling comfortable in your own home or lead to costly repairs. A dirty air conditioner filter can cause serious damage to your HVAC system and lead to expensive repairs or even a complete breakdown when you need your AC most. If you leave the air filter of an air conditioning unit clogged for too long, you may experience a system-wide failure.

To clean a reusable air filter, you must remove it from the AC unit safely and rinse it in a tub or sink with warm water. Although clogged filters are one of the most common problems affecting an AC system's functionality, they're often overlooked and require more attention than any other part of your HVAC system. To clean a reusable filter, remove it from the AC unit and rinse it in a tub or sink with warm water. If you notice that your AC isn't cooling down as much as usual or is blowing hot air, check its filter first. Sliding a wet filter back into an air conditioner can cause icing and other problems, so try not to dry it out - instead, if it's dirty but doesn't need replacing right away, try cleaning some of the dirt off in the meantime. The air conditioner filter isn't complicated but can have a huge impact on efficiency and home air quality.

We recommend checking your filter at least once a month, but advanced filters can last longer.

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