by Austin Bosse
on Friday, February 8th, 2019 at 2:49pm.
In case you might be thinking about the reliability of your furnace during this cold snap, I thought it would be worth sharing a recent winter disaster, avoided,
It was a -29 Deg. C on a February evening, about 11PM, just two days before we left for a week vacation in Mexico and the furnace quit working. I called Efficiency heating and Cooling and they were fantastic. They had the furnace up and running within a couple of hours. The service technician told me that the reason the furnace failed was that I was using one of those expensive washable microbial filters that after years of use and several washings become too restrictive to the air flow. He recommended that I use a pleated filter with an MERV 8 rating. MERV ratings go from one to 16 with 16 being the best at removing irritants from the air. Generally, MERV 8 is reasonably efficient at removing particles such as mould spores, pollen, dust mites, pet dander and household dust and still are good at letting through a sufficient volume of air for proper furnace operation, if maintained regularly.
A good way to tell if a filter is too restrictive is to remove it while the furnace is running. If the furnace runs much quieter without the filter that means that it is too restrictive and this is hard on the furnace and could lead to failure.