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I buy the blue fiberglass air conditioner vent filters. They usual come 4 in a pack for about $2.00. Instead of changing them and throwing them away every 4 months, I vacuum them, reuse them and they are as good as new. Also, I spray a little Lysol on them to keep mold and mildew to a minimum. It works great.
By 1bigmama from South Carolina
It's 2 dollars. The deal is that there is micro particulate matter trapped in the fiberglass. The filter doesn't catch all of this to begin with but it does get some. The second time around even less. The most important thing about it, is the extra load you are putting on the air handler. Now I live in Savannah Ga. If I don't put a new filter in every month my house just won't get cool. And I get a 400 dollar electric bill.
Hubby has shown me how to re-use air cleaner filters by washing them out in the bathtub. Just let them dry and reuse! (Especially good for older cleaners with hard to replace filters.) Even though they may be made of cardboard, it will dry just fine and will stand being washed several times.
By pamphyila from Los Angeles, CA
Do you buy those cheap cardboard furnace/ac filters and replace often throughout the year because they get dusty and dirty?
Even though they are cheap, I find that I can vacuum the dust off the filters carefully and reuse them.
I take the filter out of the furnace and other intake filters and take them to the garage or do the vacuuming on the floor. I use the hose of my vacuum and carefully suck all the dust. Remember not to rub the fine filters too hard. Then place the filter back in just as you found it.
It's best to do this often so as to not have your filter overflowing with dust. I probably check my furnace filters two/three times a year when I want to dust them myself.
Gail from AZ
You can do the same with car air filters.