My neighbor's filthy furnace filter

I have lived next door to Carol for five years, and we usually have dinners on Thursday nights.

I am an HVAC technician working for a prestigious HVAC company in the city.

Last Thursday, during dinner, I heard a hissing sound emanating from her attic. She said it was her heat pump and added that she had noticed that the help with indoor comfort had reduced drastically. I offered to look at the HVAC systems that weekend because I was off work. That night for dinner, we had her famous lasagna, which tasted fantastic, as always. At her house at 8 am that Saturday, she led me to the HVAC equipment. By this time, the hissing sound had grown louder and more constant. On assessing the furnace, I was shocked by how dirty and blocked the furnace filter was. Since the HVAC repairman did the installation, Carol had never scheduled for heat pump service. She had since forgotten the rules for maintaining quality heating. She was also unaware that she could remove the washable filters, clean them and reinstall them without the help of any technician. The furnace/heater repair took me about three hours, and by the time I finished, I was sweating like a pig under the summer heat. I went over the importance of HVAC maintenance with her once again. I always assumed she knew more about heating than she left on, but she had proved me wrong. Cleaning the filters also helped with air purification and improved air quality. We enjoyed brunch and the improved home comfort as we talked about everything, including our jobs.

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