Air conditioning systems help to maintain a comfortable and breathable environment in your home, but only when the air filter is clean and working properly. Air filters should be checked for dirt and debris that could clog up the filter, which will cause problems with airflow. It's also a good idea to check your filter regularly for any strange smells coming from it, which may indicate a leak in the system. Air filters are inexpensive and easy to replace, so make sure you do this on a regular basis! Check out this article for more tips on how to check your air filter. 

Check Air Filter

1) Do A Visual Inspection

The very first thing you should do when checking your air filter is to take it out and do a visual inspection. Visual inspection can be crucial in determining the state of your filter, explains the professional at, since a dirty filter will appear clogged and a damaged filter may appear worn out, torn, or ripped. If you notice any rips or tears, this will need to be replaced in order for the AC system to function properly. It's also important to check under the grill of the unit and remove any dirt, debris, or other blockages so that you can get a clear look at the filter. If you do not have an outside grill for the unit, be sure to check it from top to bottom carefully. If the air filter looks fine to you after a visual inspection then it's probably okay.

2) Smell Check

In order to determine if your air filter needs replacing, it's important to take a whiff of the filter itself. Note: do not actually sniff the filter, as this could be harmful to your lungs and respiratory system! It's enough that you come close and smell it. If you notice a very distinct and strong odor coming from the air filter, it may indicate that there is a leak in the system. A more mild smell that smells like dust or dirt is normal and does not indicate a problem with the system.

3) Test The Airflow

If you have checked the filter visually and smelled it to check for any leaks, the next step is to put your hand over the air vent to determine how much air is coming through. If you notice very little airflow or no airflow at all, this could indicate that there are blockages in the system which are reducing airflow. This could be because of a clogged filter; in this case, you will need to replace the filter. If airflow seems fine, then your filter may not be the problem and it's time to check other components like evaporator coils or condenser coils for issues.

Nest Thermostat

4) Are The Ducts Intact?

Finally, you should check to make sure there are no holes or gaps in the ducts. These can cause major problems for your AC system, so it's important to check carefully and repair any damage caused by animal invaders like squirrels or raccoons! 

5) Run The AC Unit

After you have completed all the steps, you can run your air conditioning system for a few minutes before checking your filter again. If there are no changes in the appearance of your filter or any smells coming from it, then the filter is probably okay. However, if there are still leaks present after running the AC unit, then you will need to replace the AC filter.

6) Filter Replacement

If your air filter is extremely dirty or doesn't seem to be working properly, you may need to replace it with a new one. You can purchase an AC replacement filter for most units at home improvement stores. Make sure you choose the same size as your old filter so that it will fit into your system easily. Also, a good idea is to call a professional to come and do the work for you. This will ensure that your new filter is properly installed and working as it should be!


You may not think about the air filter on your AC often, but it is important to check for dirt and debris buildup at least once a month. It's also key to monitor for any strange smells coming from the filter which could be an indicator of a leak in your system. Changing the air filter on your AC system is a simple and cost-effective way to keep it running well. The more you know about how these filters work, the better equipped you'll be to make sure they're replaced as needed. 

Posted by Prendamano Real Estate on
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