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Why is my Furnace Filter Black?

A black furnace filter is a red flag that something could be seriously wrong with your heating system. Normally, a dirty furnace filter looks grey, but if it’s jet-black, you may want to investigate a little further.

The Cause

While it may be that you haven’t changed the filter in a really long time, it could be a sign of more serious problems, including:

  • Inadequate combustion air
  • Carbon Monoxide
  • Mold

Inadequate air supply or carbon monoxide can both cause soot to form. Mould in your home can be a serious health hazard, and carbon monoxide can be deadly. Inadequate air supply sometimes happens in tightly sealed houses; carbon monoxide can come from a faulty furnace or an adjacent garage.

Air Filter Replacement and Furnace Maintenance

Your furnace air filter usually needs to be replaced or cleaned every three months. A lot of air (and therefore dust particles) moves through your furnace. As dust and deposits accumulate, your furnace has to work harder and harder to draw air through the filter. There are several more maintenance tasks that, if completed on a regular basis, help your furnace run more efficiently and add years of life to your system. Even if the filter gets changed, most homeowners don’t have the time or know-how to complete the rest of a furnace maintenance checklist.

Problem Prevention or Maintenance Plans

A Service Plan is one of the best ways to prevent serious problems like carbon monoxide from a broken furnace. HVAC technicians make sure your heating and cooling system gets the proper care at the right time. Most problems are taken care of before they even start.

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