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How To Choose And Change Air Filters

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If only we could see the air particles we breathe in day in and day out. One of your home maintenance plan should be to keep an “eye” on when it is time to change air filter and what type of filters to use.

Where are they located?


If you are a first time homeowner, you need to locate where the air filters are. It is commonly located right next to your furnace or air conditioning system air handler. The air handler is the large metal box containing the fan and fan motor. Some units might be in your basement. If you have multi-level, there might be more than 1 filter.

What to look for when choosing an air filter?

  • Check the size and the thickness of the existing filter. You want it snug and tight.
  • Consider how you want to improve the air quality. Do you have a pet? Is reducing allergen important to you? Maybe you cook a lot. The house has a certain smell you want to get rid of? Maybe you have a baby and want to elimate bacteria and viruses.

Many companies, like our friends from Filtrete, have a great tool in helping you select the right product for your home. 

Fiberglass VS Pleated

First off you need to learn to read MPR and MERV Ratings

  • MPR (Microparticles ) the more MPR your filter is, the more it will help capture from the air (think pollen, pet dander, bacteria, and viruses.)
  • MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. Higher ratings remove a larger percentage and broader range of debris from the air.

Fiberglass is a more budget friendly option, if you are not looking for heavy duty filtration. Pleated filters are more dense and able to trap more particles. Check out the labels and find ones that fit your needs.

How to change the filter

1. Turn off thermostat

2. Unscrew the HVAC cover. Remove the old filter (note which side is going in). When installing a new one, there should be an arrow indicating air flow on the side of the filter to indicate which way to insert properly.

Stop by your local Sutherlands and see the selections of filters we have to offer. Learn what’s new and the latest ways to keep your air fresh indoor for the whole family.


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