replacement filter question


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Old 09-10-14, 04:23 PM
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replacement filter question

My first post so please bear w/me. My house (1971 - 2000 sq ft) was built with a large forced air (gas) furnace and A/C was added after the fact, or so I am told. Condensate pump attached on the inside, R22 condenser on the outside. The inside unit also has a Honeywell electronic air cleaner which I have been told is not working so it is turned off. Honeywell unit has two large metal "cleaners" which I was told used to "zap" dust, allergens, etc and underneath the cleaners are two metal mesh pre-filters. I periodically take these pre-filters out and wash them down.

For years my dear brother has been bugging me to replace the two metal air cleaners with paper disposable filters. He believes that my A/C will work more efficiently by doing this as I don't have any real filtration in his opinion. These metal cleaners are 20x25x5 and paper replacements are expensive especially if I change them often. Just want to make sure that you agree that this is a good move before signing up for this recurring expense. Thanks so much!
 
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Old 09-10-14, 04:53 PM
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Welcome to the forums! I find my media filters online at a cheaper rate than retail. I don't have to change the filters but every 3 or 4 months, so the expense comes down with that. Yeah, paying $35 for a filter doesn't taste well, but regular filters cost about $10 (MERV 10), so it really is a wash. I buy a 3 pack, usually with free shipping, so I am set for a year or a little less.
 
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Old 09-10-14, 06:29 PM
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Thanks! So you think that this is a good move for me? I found MERV 8's for 17.99 in the size I need...cheapest so far...)
 
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Old 09-10-14, 07:14 PM
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Old 09-10-14, 09:11 PM
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Thanks....my local HD had the 4" also but I need 5" and they told me that was a special order item..
appreciate your feedback!
 
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Old 09-10-14, 09:59 PM
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So why not buy the 4" and fill the space with something? Maybe a low restriction filter in front or behind taped to the 4"?
 
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Old 09-11-14, 01:49 AM
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You can use the four-inch filters and fill the other inch with nothing if the filter frame is horizontal with a down flow of air. Otherwise you only need to apply a couple of blocks of wood or cardboard to hold it in place. It does not need to be full thickness all around.

Changing filters based upon their appearance is costly and foolish. A good media filter will LOOK dirty very quickly but still have a lot of dirt catching ability. It is entirely possible to go several months, sometimes as long as a year under the best conditions, before replacement is necessary. I recommend installing a filter pressure differential gauge to make the determination as to when it is necessary to change filters. You can buy a Dwyer Magnehelic gauge (range of 2 inches of water) off of Ebay for around $20 to $30 dollars and this is the BEST method to determine the need for a new filter. Note the pressure drop with a new filter and when it increases 50% you need a new filter.
 
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Old 09-11-14, 06:56 AM
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How long has it been running without the electronic cleaner working? Without the electronic portion of the cleaner in operation, your heat exchanger and evaporator coil, maybe the fan too are probably pretty dirty. I'd open up the system and clean it up really good once you get the correct filtration in place. That's going to give you back lost efficiency.
 
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Old 09-11-14, 08:36 AM
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I must confess I honestly don't know how long it has been since it worked. I had to replace the motor last summer and the HVAC tech who did the job told me that it wasn't working anymore and turned it off. Never would have thought to do this additional cleaning and I sooo appreciate your suggestion! Thank you..
 
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Old 09-11-14, 08:41 AM
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Wow... had no idea how clueless I was! Have learned a great deal from you guys and I appreciate it. Thought that the filters had to match the dimensions exactly. Next time I purchase I will keep this in mind. Will check into the filter pressure differential gauge as it sounds like a very minor investment and makes knowing when to change the filters a "no brainer"...good for someone like me ) Thank you so much. It's really hot in SoCal right now and this equipment is really getting a workout...
 
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Old 09-11-14, 08:54 AM
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Thanks for this suggestion....as I said to Furd I simply didn't know any better...thought they had to match exact dimensions in order to work properly. Thank you for the education!
 
 

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