Things sometimes appear out of place when performing simple DIY maintenance work on a furnace. Changing the filter, for example, doesn’t usually bring up questions, but if the screen turns out to be black, then you may wonder why. A black filter usually indicates that something is wrong, and some causes are more severe than others.
Carbon Monoxide Is Leaking
The hazards associated with carbon monoxide leaks are many. Breathing carbon monoxide through the air can be fatal. Thankfully, installing a carbon monoxide detector could reveal the presence of the fumes. Regardless, if you see the filter is black, it might be best to rule out carbon monoxide leaks. A professional inspection might uncover any problems or maintenance needs. Healthy Home Heating & Air can assist residents in the Charlotte area with furnace maintenance and tune-ups. If the furnace has to go, worry not. The company also handles replacement requests.
There Is Too Much Soot
Soot sticking to a filter is better than soot traveling around the air ducts and into the home, but if the filter collects a lot of soot, you’ll have to find out what the cause is. Be mindful that the furnace may not be the source. The residue could come from a fireplace or even from candles. Also, when there’s soot in the heater, think about getting it cleaned right away. A dirty furnace isn’t always efficient.
Expected and Unexpected Reasons
A common reason a filter turns black is due to age. Failure to change a filter in a timely fashion can lead to dirt and dust buildups that create clogs. The clogs, in turn, may cause serious mechanical problems, such as overheating or worse. Also serious, and somewhat unexpected, is the presence of mold. Mold indicates there’s moisture in the furnace which, combined with dirt and dust, provides fertile ground for toxic mold growth.