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Why Is My Air Conditioner Air Filter Black?

Have you ever removed your air conditioner’s air filter only to find it covered in a black coating? If your air conditioner’s air filter is dirty or clogged, then you may be faced with issues that can harm your person, HVAC system, and property.

Your air filter may be black for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Old Age
  • Mold Growth
  • Pet Dander
  • Tobacco Smoke
  • Miscellaneous Debris
  • Dirt

If you notice a black air filter in your air conditioning system, you need to have it cleaned or replaced right away. A dirty air filter can lead to many issues, which is why you should address these problems as early as possible.

What Happens If My Air Filter Is Black?

When your air conditioner’s air filters turn black, many issues can arise. If you notice any of the following issues in your home, have your filters looked at:

  • Reduced Airflow: The air filter inside your AC unit is designed to catch unwanted contaminants in your cooling system’s ductwork and improve the indoor air quality inside your home, including dust, dirt, and other debris that may enter your system. When your air filter is black, the filter screen is blocked or clogged. This significantly decreases airflow in your home and causes your air conditioner to run for unnecessarily long periods.
  • Decreased Air Conditioner Efficiency: When your air filter is black and clogged, your air conditioner works harder to keep your home cool than with a clean, unblocked filter. When your air conditioning system works longer and harder to keep your home at a comfortable temperature, its energy efficiency decreases and results in expensive electricity bills.
  • Increased Temperatures: Clogged air filters reduce air circulation throughout your home. When cool air cannot circulate from room to room, indoor temperatures increase and cause your home to decrease its ability to cool off.
  • High Utility Bills: Your air conditioner is powered by electricity. So, a black air filter resulting in decreased air conditioner efficiency can cause your utility bills to increase during the peak of summer.

What Should I Do If My Air Filter Is Black?

why is my AC air filter black
From the first moment that you notice your air conditioner’s air filter is black, you need to have it handled. Depending on the style of your air conditioner and air filters, there are two things that you can do when faced with a black air filter.

Clean the Air Filter

If you have a washable air filter for your air conditioner, your first instinct may be to clean the dirty air filter. Regularly washing your AC’s air filter is crucial to the performance of your system and your home’s indoor air quality. A dirty air filter restricts airflow, leading to an inefficient system and dirty indoor air. That’s why it’s important to clean your HVAC system every few months.

To clean a washable air filter, first turn off the AC unit. Remove the filter and gently vacuum or shake off loose debris. Rinse the filter under running water and let it air-dry completely before reinstalling. Do this every three months or so to ensure its reliability.

Replace the Air Filter

If your unit’s air filters are not washable, then you will need to change your air conditioner’s air filters. To ensure that your unit is running properly and accurately cleaning your air, replace your air filters once every three months. If your unit has a dirty air filter for too long, your system can be damaged.

To properly replace your air filters, have experienced technicians come to your home and do the job for you. No matter what style of AC unit you have, these professionals will quickly locate your air filters and replace them at an affordable price.

Why Is Air Conditioner Maintenance So Important?

Air conditioners are a considerable investment. That’s why you need to make sure that you are taking proper care of your unit throughout the year, even in the seasons you are not using them. There are many reasons why you should consider having your unit serviced every few months, including:

  • Extended Lifespan
  • Less Frequent Breakdowns and Repairs
  • Enhanced Energy Efficiency
  • Higher Indoor Air Quality

Additionally, investing in a priority maintenance program will save you money every year from discounted services and avoiding problems.

When choosing an HVAC company to help you with your AC maintenance needs, it’s important to choose a reliable one. GAC Services has won numerous industry awards, including the 2015 ACCA Residential Contractor of the Year Award, recognizing us as the nation’s best residential heating and cooling contractor.

We offer comprehensive air conditioning maintenance in Gaithersburg, Montgomery County, Frederick County, Howard County, and Carroll County, Maryland. If your air conditioner’s air filter is black, contact us today to schedule an appointment with our team of experts.

Financing Options Available

At GAC, we understand how important a functioning HVAC system is for your home. This is why we offer flexible financing options to help you take care of your new HVAC purchase, so you can get back to taking care of what matters most to you.

Priority Maintenance

A well-maintained HVAC system can save you from having to invest in costly repairs down the road. Learn more about the priority maintenance services offered by GAC Services.