View Full Version : Do electrostatic furnace filters wear out?
03-14-2010, 06:32 AM
How does one know if they need to be replaced?
I'm apologizing in advance for asking what seems to be a stupid question, but I have found no definitive answer on the WWW.
It is hard to tell looking at the ones I have if they are actually filtering anything. I wash them and afterwards, residue can be wiped off with a paper towel, though it's difficult to see any dust or dirt on the actual filter parts before washing them.
03-14-2010, 09:10 AM
Electrostatic filters are simple and should never have to be replaced unless they are falling apart. I doubt they could ever be damaged by mere airflow in the course of normal usage since the filter is made of synthetic fibers or strands. Perhaps the frame could fall apart with some aggressive beating to remove excess water after hosing them clean. Other than that, what's to fail?
As far as efficiency, they are not the most efficient, but they are better than 1" throwaway filters. A static charge is created by the movement of air through the filter, causing particles to be attracted and held until cleaning. Not much to them.
If you clean yours often you might not notice as much collected dust as those that are cleaned infrequently.
Replace it now before damage is done to your system from reduced air flow.
Most are to restrictive to allow the minimum air flow to protect the equipment.
You should at least have the static tested to see if you are getting minimum air flow with that filter,most won't.
03-14-2010, 02:35 PM
I have not found anything that last forever. I would contact MFG and find out what is product life span.
03-15-2010, 01:16 PM
electrostatic filters WILL decrease airflow and life of system.
I just tested 1 last week and the static preassure was off the charts.
leave it out for a few days and your be suprised.
03-15-2010, 01:23 PM
Electrostatic air filters do have a higher static resistance to air flow than throw away filters, but about the same as a poorly maintained 5" pleated, so the trick is to keep them washed. Also watch out for any brand electrostatic that has a foam core to it. The foam core can become clogged and a visit to a car wash may be needed to actually get it clean. If you can't easily see light thru the filter after it is washed and shaken out, then take it to a car wash, lay it flat and wash it out. If you have smokers in the house even this may not get the filter clean, better off to just use throw away filters (after all if you were worried about clean air, then smoking in the home kinda negates any "clean air" equation.). Tar from smoking is very hard to get from a washable filter without the use of some kind of solvent.
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