A dirty filter can cause a lot of problems for your HVAC system. It restricts airflow to the air handler, which can lead to hot and cold spots in your home, poor cold air flow, and even cause the system to overheat and fail. The blower has to work harder to get air through a clogged filter, and this can cause the heat exchanger to heat up too much and turn off. Additionally, a dirty filter can cause dirt to build up inside the air conditioner, leading to more frequent repairs and shortening the life of the unit.
It's important to replace your air filter regularly - every 1 to 6 months - to save money on energy consumption and avoid damage to your HVAC system. If you have pets, live in an area with poor air quality, smoke, have severe allergies, have carpets, or if you have a lot of people living in your home, you probably need to replace your air filter more often. When it comes time to replace your air filter, make sure you get models directly from your air conditioner manufacturer - not one-size-fits-all air cleaners from a hardware store. After reading all the problems that a dirty air filter can cause, it's clear that a clean air filter is absolutely necessary for optimal performance of your HVAC system.