Saturday, January 14, 2012

Making your own REUSABLE furnace filter!

Changing your air filter to your furnace does not need to cost a lot.  In fact, it couldn’t be simpler.  Consider making “reusable” one!!  It is more eco-friendly, time efficient AND friendly to your budget. 

We learned about this when it was time to replace our furnace filter in our *new* home.  Not one store carried the size we needed!!  (And I thought there were standard sizes!!)  Turns out, you can make your OWN furnace filter out of this blue stuff called "Natural Aire".    
This is sold at hardware store likes Lowe's or Home Depot.  
When I was revisiting Lowe's to write this entry, the cost for a one-time-use furnace filter ranges from $3-$15....if you replace your furnace filter like you are supposed to do, the cost adds up (while your energy bill goes down.)  Why not equal the playing field and only buy the filter ONCE and enjoy the energy savings without having to monthly purchase a new furnace filter!! (Or actually CHANGE it once a month instead of "getting your money's worth out of it".)
The PRICE of one of these blue things at Lowe's....found on the furnace filter isle!
We made 2 out of the material so we could have one “in use” and "to replace the dirty one" as soon as it came out (NO waiting for it to dry).
The Homemade Furnace Filter Recipe:
1)      Measure the area of your furnace filter space.  Double the dimensions so you can buy enough to make 2.
2)      Purchase  this Blue filter stuff from your local hardware store (such as Lowe’s or Home Depot).  It can be found on the furnace filter isle.
3)      Cut out 2 furnace filters.  You could just take a black sharpie and trace your OLD filter on the blue filter stuff and cut it out.....BUT if you are a perfectionist like me,  It is easiest to make it “square” by using a tool called a "Carpenter's Square" (resembling a “T”) OR using quilting board, squaring device and marker.
This is a carpenter's square
After pondering using quilting supplies, please omit using the rotary cutter as it will ruin your blade.  Use these squaring supplies to DRAW the line and then cut with scissors instead of ruining your rotary blade!
This is our READY made reusable furnace filter!
4)      Insert one filter into your space and store the other one.  (We keep ours on top of the water heater.)
This is our dirty one coming out...
This is the *new* CLEAN one put in...
Our finished product...doesn't look any different, does it?
5)      Change your furnace filter every month for best results.  To change them:  Remove the dirty one and insert the nice clean dry #2.  Bring the dirty one to the bathroom and spray it off with the shower head.  Let it dry and store it until you need to replace it next month! 
Wala!  An EASY reusable furnace filter that costs you little in time and money!

21 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh!! You are a genious! I have been needing to change ours for.... well.... about a month now and just never get around to doing it. I am so going to do this!! Thanks!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. it is really a nice work and good thought. by using this approach we can save a lot money as we have to change our ac filter on regular basis.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Going to check this "stuff " side by side with a filter. See how the weave looks. To much dust getting through will cost out of pocket to fix. Talking hundreds.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for sharing your re-usable furnace filter recipe, Wendy. We’ve heard heating experts stress the importance of changing the furnace filters at least once a month. This is because through time, more allergens make it through the filters degrading the quality of air that circulates through your home.

    Darryl Iorio

    ReplyDelete
  5. I will really enjoy the energy savings here, Wendy! Though I’m not that in favor of DIY projects, I think I should give it a try since your instructions here are very clear and easy to follow. Plus, the pictures make for a better illustration. I hope this homemade filter will produce better results, and I hope you have more DIY projects like this. :)

    Launce Newlove

    ReplyDelete
  6. I started doing this back in 2008. Depending on your furnace and where the filter is placed you may need a more solid frame. There is one out there on the market that has one inch square holes and plastic filter hold downs that can be cut to size for your filter space. For those worried about small particle allergens there is also a denser carbon based thin filter sheet that can be sandwiched between the frame and the less dense filter material mentioned above. Though the carbon based sheet needs replacement and cannot be washed.

    ReplyDelete
  7. DIY projects excite me a lot and it also makes me feel good to be a saver! Thanks for giving me very precise instructions, and good timing too since I already have to change the furnace filters next month. I think I’ll come rushing to the nearest store to get the materials. :D

    -Georgia Fuller-

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope your filter turned out great! Thanks for your enthusiasm!

      Delete
  8. I have one of those filters that are really thick.... will this still work??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. This will still work...but to make it more "thick" use two together! The thicker the better!

      Delete
  9. Thanks! I'll be doing that this weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Replacing furnace filters is important for air quality, but replacing your furnace filter does a lot more than prevent allergens, dust, and dirt from being blown around your home.

    Furnace Air Filters

    ReplyDelete
  11. So you are putting a filter inside the return register instead of between the bottom of the return duct and the air intake of the furnace itself. If, as we do, you live in an old home in which the former owner neglected the filter, there are years of accumulated lint stuck to the sides of the return duct that can detach, clog the furnace, and blow around your house. This approach does not seem to address that possibility. And yes, we have had a duct cleaning service come when we moved in, but they can only suck out the lint that is loose.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many modern HVAC systems are designed with the filter in behind the return air grill in the ceiling of the house, which is the type of system Wendy has. Wherever your filter is located, you would just replace it with this one.

      Delete
  12. My air return has a lot of "pull." Is there any possibilty the filter could get sucked into the duct? Sorry if that's a crazy question, but I've had some DIY experiences that have surprised me. Is there any merit to stapling to old filter frame, making a new frame. just to be sure?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, definitely make a frame if you're going to try this. Also, don't put it behind a wall grate, make a frame that slides into the slot on the furnace.

      Delete
  13. Nice! I had to laugh about the quilting supplies though...that would have caused a problem in our house. LOL

    ReplyDelete
  14. Changing your air filter to your furnace does not need to cost a lot. In fact, it couldn't be simpler. Consider making “reusable” one!! It is more ... ffurnacefilters.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. If you really desire to get such type of information, visit this blog quickly.
    ushomefilter.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. You are giving very wrong advice. These filters are like trying to stop sand with a tennis racket and mainly used as prefilters. You want a pleated filter with a MERV rating of 11 or higher. Please stop giving advice to people when it comes to health and safety!

    ReplyDelete
  17. The air you breathe will be cleaner, as will your furniture and drapes. air condition company

    ReplyDelete