Where is the HVAC Filter Located? A Comprehensive Guide

Are you having trouble locating the air filter in your HVAC system? You're not alone. Many homeowners struggle to find the filter in their home's heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system. Fortunately, this guide will help you locate the filter and learn how to change it. The filter in an HVAC system typically slides into a slot above or below the unit.

In other systems, the air cleaner is usually located behind the return air grille on the wall, ceiling, or closet door. It's often close to the home thermostat or right next to the air handler for your air conditioning system. In some systems, filters are located in the return air duct. If you have a large system with multiple air handlers and return ducts, finding the filters can be a challenge.

In this case, look for a large box filter (often called a Merv 1 filter) located above the return air chamber on a concrete floor. The edge of most air filters has an arrow showing the intended direction of air flow through the filter. If you have a vertical HVAC unit, the air cleaner will be on the upper door. If it's a horizontal unit, the filter will be located on the inlet side and slide on a rack.

If you don't have a regular HVAC service technician to ask how to change an AC filter, you've probably neglected other important maintenance tasks besides changing the AC filters. Central air conditioning filters (or heating system filters if hot air heat is also used) are sometimes difficult to find. To locate them, look for a slot intended to receive an air conditioning filter in the blower unit. The filter may have simply been left out and the slot left open, removing dirt, debris, moisture and mold from nearby basement areas.

Once you've found your oven filter, you can learn how to change it and start changing it as often as you should. Documenting the location of your HVAC system's air filters is also important for future building owners, occupants, or repairers.

Shana Gojcaj
Shana Gojcaj

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