Landlord & Furnace Filter Issue

Lounge By aces413 Updated 30 Dec 2010 , 3:10pm by aces413

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aces413 Posted 29 Dec 2010 , 8:49pm
post #1 of 11

Hi all,

I've been searching the internet for information regarding a landlord's obligation to change furnace filters (in Delaware), but I can't find anything. Does anyone know the rule in their own state? If I knew at least one state required the landlord to do this more than once a year, I'd feel better. My landlord changed our heater filter over A YEAR ago, and hasn't been back to do so since. The heating unit is outside on the balcony, behind a locked door--so we couldn't change it ourselves if we wanted to. I told them in early November that since we've turned the heat on, we've felt sick, and reminded them the filters need to be changed. They said they'd take care of it in a few weeks...I'm reading online that filters should be changed every 6-8 weeks, not less than once a wonder my throat hurts and we wake up feeling horrible. Anyway, we reminded them again, and hopefully they'll take care of it soon...I suppose they're in no rush because they don't live here and it doesn't matter so much to rude.

PS. We jimmied the lock on the door and checked the's filthy. BUT, we don't know what kind of filter to get and don't want to get in trouble for opening that door, since we're clearly not allowed. Haha.

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idgalpal Posted 29 Dec 2010 , 9:52pm
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Well, filters are cheap, I'd take that one down to your local hardware store and buy a replacement. That's a pretty cheap and quick fix, even if it is the landlord's responsibility.You'll reep the benefits of the replacement.

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Elcee Posted 29 Dec 2010 , 11:03pm
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Originally Posted by aces413

I'm reading online that filters should be changed every 6-8 weeks, not less than once a year...

My DH is an HVAC technician who is also mildly OCD icon_lol.gif. Even he has never, ever changed our filters that often. He recommends once or twice a year. I agree with the previous poster...since you've already jimmied the lock, just take the old filter to Home Depot or Lowes and buy a replacement. It'll probably cost less than lozenges for your sore throats icon_smile.gif.

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-K8memphis Posted 29 Dec 2010 , 11:19pm
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My husband changes ours at least every 60 days--sometimes once a month.

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BlakesCakes Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 2:05am
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Not feeling well may be more serious than dirty filters icon_eek.gif When my filters are dirty, I feel like I have a stuffy nose, but that's all.

You may have carbon monoxide issues with the heating unit.
I wouldn't waste one second getting myself to a hardware store and purchasing a carbon monoxide detector! While I was there, I'd purchase a new filter, too.

If the carbon monoxide detector goes off, I'd call the landlord/office and let them listen to it screaming (and they do scream)---then I'd get out real quick.

Right now, the least of your worries is the question of who is responsible for filter cleaning/replacement.


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aces413 Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 3:20am
post #6 of 11

Thanks everyone. Good point about the carbon monoxide...I'll definitely look into that...

They said they'll be out next week to change it (that's what they said in early November) the email she said the owner is waiting for "the weather to get warmer" What? That made no sense.

Anyway, I'll give them 'til next week before we take matters into our own hands, because I don't want them coming in here next week and changing the brand new filter that we bought. Otherwise, we'll just do it ourselves and tell them to skip our unit when/if they come out.

I just wasn't sure what the ruling was (if there is one) on how often they should be changed. I hear differing opinions. Filter manufacturers tend to suggest that it be done more often (go figure)--that's where I got the 6-8 week recommendation. But I'm sure it's not good to be breathing the air that passes through that filthy filter.

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cheatize Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 7:12am
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Please don't wait until next week to find out about a possible carbon monoxide issue. If you can't afford a detector right now, your local fire department most likely has a tester and would be happy to come out and check it for you.

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MollyGirl_17 Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 8:11am
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If you have any type of gas heat or stove the landlord should already have CO2 detectors installed (I would hope!). If not, I'd just chalk it up to a purchase for your safety and buy one along with the filters. Neither are expensive. You can even get ones that just plug into an outlet, that way you can take it with you if you move. We change the filter in our gas furnace every 90 days - I mark it on the calendar. Two furry cats = furry filters. When we had an apt our property manager would just hand out 2 or 3 filters at a time to us so we could change them whenever we needed. I guess we were spoiled!

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jen1977 Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 2:16pm
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My husband is in HVAC....runs the service dept. He changes our filter at least every 3 months. Our thermostat actually lets us know when ours needs changed. Make sure you get a good filter too. The ones our landlord was putting in, hubby took out and replaced with good filters. He literally poured salt on the one from the landlord, and most of it went thru the filter.....means most dust got thru too!

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leily Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 2:41pm
post #10 of 11

how often the filter needs to be changed also depends on the filter. The one we have is like an accordian and about 5" deep, you can't buy it in stores, it's a special order. The filter manufacturer and the furnace recommend it be replaced every 6-8 months.

But if it's dirty it definitely needs changed. SOrry i can't help with who is responsible for changing it and the laws, every place we ever rented the landlord took care of it, and always did a furnace service check in october to check for any leaks etc... (furnace usually got turned on late oct/early nov)

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aces413 Posted 30 Dec 2010 , 3:10pm
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Wow...ok, we'll definitely be heading to the hardware store today. That's scary! We have gas heat, a gas stove and a gas fireplace. CO detector seems necessary.

If the nicer filters aren't too expensive, we might just grab one of those as well...I'm sure the ones the landlord provides aren't good quality filters. I'm getting sick of the stuffy nose, sore throat, watery burning eyes, etc. Plus, I have the sneaking suspicion that the dust in this place might have to do with the dirty filter. We dust, and 2 days later the surface is covered again. Gross. I hope people at Lowe's don't think we're weirdos bringing in some dirty filter and pouring salt through new ones... icon_razz.gif

Thanks everyone!

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