How long do air conditioner filters last?

How long do different types of air conditioner filters last before they need to be changed and how can you tell when a filter needs changing?


With the purchasing of an air conditioner (AC) comes the need to ensure that it is maintained so as to function optimally and deliver the best cooling for you and your home. Part of keeping your unit maintained requires ensuring that all its parts work.

Important internal components of your air conditioning unit need to be serviced, checked, and sometimes replaced when the need arises. Your air conditioner filter is particularly important for the proper functioning of your air conditioner, so owners of air conditioning units need to know how long the filters last.

Air filter lifespan

The air filter in the air conditioner is an important component in the maintenance of a unit. The air filters are designed to trap the particles passing through the air and to assist with keeping the air around your home and space clean as your air conditioner runs.

If your unit starts acting up, one of the first things experts will advise you to check is the filter, as it is prone to get clogged up with dirt and dust from working overtime. Filters need to be checked and replaced after some time.

How long do air conditioner filters last?

Since the air conditioner filter is crucial for the adequate functioning of your air conditioning unit, it must be routinely checked to ensure that it is still in a good condition.

If your AC unit starts to act up and does not deliver the same cooling it used to, it is highly likely that the air filter is the cause of the malfunctioning.

A dirty air filter will cause the air conditioner to malfunction and this will need a replacement or for the filter to be cleaned by a professional, or by yourself if it is possible, but this is not advised.

The type of air conditioner filter you have will impact how long it lasts before needing to be changed. Cheaper fibreglass filters can last up to a month, while higher-end pleated filters tend to last for three to six months but should still be checked every month.

How do you know if your filter needs to be changed?

You will notice your air conditioner filter needs changing when you start seeing changes in its functionality. Your unit may start malfunctioning, and the air may not be as hot or as cold as it normally is and should be, depending on whether you are using cooling or heating.

Furthermore, there may be a reduction in the flow of air circulating into and out of the unit, your electricity bill might increase out of nowhere, and someone in your home may experience irritation allergies.

What contributes to filters lasting longer?

Your filter is a delicate component of your air conditioner, and it relies mostly on the environment (the temperature and air quality outside).

You need to consider how often you use your unit as this could affect the longevity of your air filter. With more usage, more air particles will be captured by the filter which will then need more frequent changing.

The air quality of your environment will also affect how long the filter lasts. If the air quality is not good, the unit will be working harder to clean the air.

Available air conditioner filters on Amazon

Amazon has some air conditioner filters you can purchase if you are considering replacing your old ones.

Some Amazon options include the Filtrete MPR 300 AC Furnace Air Filter, which come in a six pack for $35.14. It is said to outperform fibreglass filters and is a washable, non-electrostatic, three-month pleated air filter for your air conditioner.

The Aerostar MERV 8 Pleated Air Filter is a pleated filter and is 100 percent synthetic electrostatic media for high efficiency with low airflow restriction. The filter is intended to last 60-90 days at the price of $30.99 and should be checked monthly.

Final thoughts

To ensure that you always have a well-functioning air conditioner, it is important to keep all the components running and functioning well too. An air conditioner contains delicate components that need to be maintained frequently to avoid malfunctioning.

An air conditioner’s filter is one of these components and it is important to know how long your air filter is set to last, so that you know when it needs to be checked for a possible replacement. Filters will typically last between one and six months before a replacement is needed.

Leave a Comment