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Does the AC Filter Have to be Exact?

Installing the right size air filter is one of the best ways to keep your HVAC unit working at its optimum capacity. This can help you avoid costly AC repairs and improve air conditioning performance. Keep reading to learn why an AC filter has to fit exactly if you want the best performance.

Right Fit is Important for Performance and Longevity 

If the air filter is the wrong size, it can lead to several problems. The size of the filter affects its ability to trap contaminants. Air filters trap pollutants circulating in the air. If you install an air filter that’s too small for the HVAC system, it could lead to air quality issues.

For example, using a smaller filter can result in contaminated air passing through the gaps. This will allow pollutants to enter the system, damage its components, and reduce indoor air quality. 

Similarly, if the filter is too dense, it will result in insufficient airflow as the unit would consume more energy to force air through the filter. Consuming more energy would not only result in high utility bills but can also cause the AC components to suffer premature wear and tear. The right size air filters improve the performance of the entire unit and indoor air quality. They also make the unit more energy efficient.

How Tightly Should My Air Filter Fit?

The air filter should fit so there are no gaps on the sides, sitting perfectly flat on the surface. The right-size air filter should slide smoothly into the frame. If the filter slides in but there is still enough room for air to pass through, it is too small. Installing a small filter can result in rattling or buzzing noises from the HVAC unit. On the other hand, if you have to forcefully jam or bend the filter to fit in the space, the filter is too large. 

If you need clarification on the correct filter size, you can review the manual that came with the HVAC unit, which should have the specifications for the filter size. You could also get guidance from an expert HVAC technician. 

Standard Size Not Fitting Well? Try A Custom Cut Filter

The quality of the air filter can become irrelevant if the fit is wrong. Rather than only choosing an air filter solely based on quality, you should also consider its size. While most HVAC units use standard-sized filters, some can use custom-cut air filters. If you cannot find a filter that fits your unit, a custom-cut filter can be the solution.

You can either purchase a custom-cut filter or cut one yourself. However, cutting an air filter without the right tools and experience is not recommended. If you cut the filter incorrectly, it can lose its structural integrity. Click here to learn more about custom HVAC filters.


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About the Author

Kaya Wittenburg

Blog Author and CEO

Kaya Wittenburg is the Founder and CEO of Sky Five Properties. Since the age of 10, real estate has been deeply ingrained into his thoughts. With world-class negotiation and deal-making skills, he brings a highly impactful presence into every transaction that he touches.

He is here to help you use real estate as a vehicle to develop your own personal empire and feel deeply satisfied along the way. If you have an interest in buying, selling or renting property in South Florida, contact Kaya today.

Feel free to call me at: (305) 357-0635
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