Debunking HVAC Myths: Filters, Vents, System Size

When it comes to comprehensive home HVAC maintenance, the team at My Buddy the Plumber is here to help you in numerous ways. From furnace and air conditioner maintenance to thermostat assistance, air quality improvements and many other areas, we’re your one-stop shop when it comes to all your home’s heating and air needs.

Sadly, our years of quality service in this industry have exposed us to one ugly part of the HVAC world: The myths that are out there about heating and cooling. We’re not exactly sure where many of these broad misconceptions came from, but many of them have convinced homeowners to take actions that are directly harmful to their HVAC system and their monthly utility bill. In this two-part blog series, however, we’ll debunk these myths and ensure you’re taking the right actions for the health of your system.

debunking HVAC myths filters

Myth #1: Changing HVAC Filter Once a Year is Enough

One of the single most important components in your HVAC system is the filter, which catches particulate matter and allergens that would otherwise be circulated throughout your home. But many homeowners don’t realize that you need to change it out more than once a year —a nd many don’t even know when they should replace the filter in the first place!

Generally speaking, your filters should be changed at least once every few months, and possibly more often depending on the type you’re using. If you have pets or other home conditions that increase the presence of dander, debris or contaminants, the frequency with which you change the filter should only increase.

Myth #2: Closing Vents in Empty Rooms Increases HVAC Efficiency

There’s a common misconception that if you close off vents in rooms that aren’t currently being occupied, it will help increase the efficiency of your HVAC system. It might seem logical at first, but here’s why it isn’t true:

The amount of energy it takes to maintain the temperature throughout your home increases exponentially every time you add an additional room. This is why your energy bill increases when you heat an empty bedroom—the same principle applies to air venting as well.

If your HVAC system has already reached the temperature you have set on your thermostat, it will simply recirculate air from that room back into other parts of the home. In reality, you’ll increase the odds of becoming fatigued by excessive heat in one room and drafts in others if you close off these vents.

Myth #3: The Bigger the HVAC System, The Better

Another prime example of how misconceptions can lead to HVAC-related problems is the idea that bigger is always better when it comes to home heating and cooling. Sure, a larger furnace or air conditioner will cool or heat a larger area than its smaller counterparts, but it’s important to consider other factors as well.

Too large a unit risks short-cycling of the AC or furnace, which will wear down components and raise your utility bill. Speak to our staff about properly-sized options if you need a furnace or AC replacement in the near future.

For more on debunking common HVAC myths, or to learn about any of our HVAC or plumbing services, speak to the staff at My Buddy the Plumber in Provo today.