There are several suggestions online about how often and when you should replace your HEPA filter. When it comes to HEPA filter replacement frequency, you need to know what works for you. There are signs which you should replace HEPA filter in a vacuum, but if you are keen, you should not have to do it for a long time. You may be curious about how long HEPA filters last. Find out below if a HEPA replacement is due and how to maintain it in the meantime.
How Often Should You Change Your Vacuum Cleaner HEPA Filter
HEPA filters in commercial vacuum cleaners should be reviewed twice a week for any challenges. This is because commercial HEPA filters are used continuously daily in a business. Commercial settings that use a vacuum system should replace their filter twice yearly to ensure continued performance.
HEPA filters in residential settings tend to last longer than in commercial. This is because there is unlikely to be much dust accumulated in a single year. Residential filters are designed to be changed at least once in three years for maximum filtration.
Signs That You Must Replace the HEPA Filter
While there are no stipulated rules for knowing when to change HEPA filters, there are signs that one should watch out for that will point to the need to have a filter replaced. These signs include
A Moldy Odor
This is a sign that there is a massive problem with your HEPA filter. Most people tend to notice an odor when running their vacuum cleaner. In such instances, replace your HEPA filter as soon as possible since it is the major plausible cause of the odor.
A heavily-soiled filter is an obvious reason that the entire filter should be replaced as soon as possible. Soiled HEPA filters do not provide adequate protection against hazardous airborne contaminants.
If you notice that your air conditioning or heating functions take a long time to turn on, then you might need to replace the filter. Usually, you will hear a “whirring” sound once you power it up. However, if it takes a while for the actual air or heat to come through, it could mean that the system is clogged and dirty, limiting fresh air from coming into your home.
Also, watch out if the vacuum cleaner is not sucking up much air as it used to. Check if the vacuum cleaner is making louder noises than usual. This could mean that the HEPA filters need to be replaced as soon as possible.
Allergy flare-ups among people in the household are also signs that you ought to consider a HEPA filter replacement. People with allergies tend to be allergic or sensitive to poor air quality and can appreciate the air filter being replaced promptly. Therefore, if you notice people sneezing and sniffing around you more often, it is a good idea to have your HEPA filter replaced.
Time Since Last Replacement
Consider replacing your filters if it has been over a year and you don’t recall ever replacing your vacuum filters.
How to Clean HEPA Air Filters
Before embarking on your first maintenance and cleaning project, ensure you check the owner’s manual to see if the filter is not replaceable. What makes a HEPA filter replaceable is its ability to retain the same efficiency once cleaned.
You may vacuum or rinse a regular HEPA, but it might not perform properly in the end. Here are a few cleaning tips;
- Check the guide to see if the filter is permanent, replaceable, or washable
- Prepare a disposable bag. This large disposable bag will help you transport the filter outside a room to prevent releasing dirt and debris into the atmosphere
- Wear protective gear
- Open the air filter compartment usually located at the back of the unit
- Gently remove the filter and put it in a bag. Handle with care to avoid accidental damage
- Transport it to a water source or sink if it is washable. Rinse it under cold water. Leave it dry before returning it to prevent mold growth
- If it is a permanent filter, vacuum gently to ensure the fibers are not pulled out
- Return the filter into the compartment and run it to trap any unwanted substances that escaped
Maintenance Tips for HEPA Filters
- Set a reminder to change the filters at intervals, keeping note of the day it was installed. Once you know when to change the HEPA filter, you can also schedule regular inspection and maintenance.
- Wear rubber gloves and a breathing mask before opening the vacuum to replace the filter. Ensure the vacuum is unplugged from the power source. Open the filter canister, remove the filter, and observe it under bright light.
- Check to see if the filter is washable or not. The best course of action would be to replace the filter with a new one entirely. Filters don’t cost as much, and the result is improved air quality in your home.
How Often Should A Filter Be Cleaned and Maintained?
Note that maintenance depends on the vacuum brand and model you are using. The frequency of maintenance and replacement depends on how and when you use the vacuum.
If you use a Dreame T20, try to clean the HEPA filter every four to six month. When it comes to replacement, the filter can last you long before you may have to replace it again, as long as you schedule regular inspection and maintenance.
The HEPA filter replacement frequency also depends on whether it is a commercial or residential setting. If you are using it in a commercial space, you may have to change it more frequently due to the heavy usage. However, in a residential setting, the filter should last two to three years before replacing. The frequency varies among different people and generally depends on how you use and your regular cleaning and maintenance schedule.