Self-replacement of the air conditioner filter: what to consider?

Most of us associate air conditioners with the long-awaited coolness on hot summer days or with warmth in the off-season, when it is raining and slushy outside, and the apartment has a comfortable temperature. But before the air enters the room, it passes through special filters. Thanks to them, dust, pollen and other harmful components do not get into our homes and offices.

However, you need to understand that the filter is a consumable. For this reason, it is necessary to regularly clean or replace the air filters of air conditioners. In this article, we will show you what the different types of filters look like and how to properly maintain them.

General information

Filters in air conditioners need to be serviced every three months. This is the optimal time frame. In some cases, it is enough to wash the filter with water, in some cases it needs to be completely replaced. We’ll talk about this in more detail later.

Before replacing or cleaning the air conditioner filter, remove it from the indoor unit. The indoor unit is the part of the air conditioner that is located on the room and most often hangs on the wall.

air conditioner cleaning products

To service the filter, follow the simple guidelines:

  1. Unplug the air conditioner from the wall outlet;

  2. Remove the decorative cover covering the technical part of the indoor unit. Often it is screwed on the perimeter;

  3. Find the filter and remove it. Later in the article, you can see what the different types of filters look like;

  4. Rinse the filter under running water or with detergent, dry it and put it back in place;

  5. If flushing is not possible, install a new filter;

  6. Screw on the decorative cover;

  7. Plug the air conditioner into the wall outlet.

Types of filters and their maintenance

Air conditioners are equipped with coarse and fine filters. They have different service requirements. Let’s look at them in more detail.

Coarse filters

The most common coarse filter is the mesh filter. It is easy to clean, but every six months it still needs to be replaced with a new one. The strainer can be washed either simply with water or with detergent, using a soft sponge. The second type of coarse filters is pocket filters. The pocket filter can not be washed with water, otherwise it loses its properties. A complete replacement is required.

Fine filters

Fine filters must not be washed with water. They must be completely replaced every 3 months of use. Some types of filters can be changed less frequently.

There are many varieties of fine filters. Let’s list the main ones.

Carbon filters serve for about 3-5 months, do not lend themselves to washing. It is good to filter out sharp odors, for example, from tobacco smoke.

carbon filter

Plasma filters are significantly more expensive than coal filters, but they rarely need to be replaced because they trap dust with an electric field. Perfectly cope with air purification.

Plasma filter

Filters with silver ions. They last 3-6 months, need to be completely replaced, are not suitable for washing with water. Such filters destroy up to 90% of harmful volatile components from the street, filter odors and suppress the reproduction of fungi in the room.

Zeolite filters. Unlike other fine filters, it can be washed with water. It lasts up to 5 years, but we recommend replacing it every 3 years.

Catechin filters for air conditioners are responsible for cleaning the air from bacteria. They last up to one year, but we recommend replacing it every six months.

Catechin filter

Multifunctional filters. They are a combination of the various filters listed above. They need frequent replacement (every 3-6 months). Do not give in to washing.


You can replace the air conditioner filters yourself, there is nothing complicated about this. Knowing what filters look like and what their service life is, you can save a lot on calling specialists who offer filter replacement services.

In the comments below, you can share your experience on how to install a new filter or wash the old one so that it performs its functions properly. Good luck!

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