How to Clean Heat Pump Filters

Heat pumps are an economical way to either warm or cool your home and save on electricity bills. But to keep your heat pump operating efficiently, you need to clean it! Canstar explains how to clean heat pump filters, and why you should do it.

Why clean heat pump filters?

Before your heat pump blows warm (or cool) air throughout your home, that air passes through a filter. And if that filter is clogged full of dirt and dust, then the air isn’t going to be able to pass through it smoothly.

This could lead to your heat pump not heating or cooling effectively, or it going into overdrive to do the same job, driving up your power bill.

And if the situation gets too bad, it could even damage your heat pump. It’s estimated that over 90% of heat pump failures are down to owners neglecting to clean them.

But performance aside, heat pumps can become a breeding ground for bacteria, mould, dust mites and harmful pollens. And regular cleaning your filters can avoid that happening.

How often should you clean heat pump filters?

In general, about every four to 12 weeks, depending on how often you use your heat pump. For those running it daily, closer to four weeks is best. If you only use it occasional, once every three months should be fine. Or if your heat pump is rarely used, every six months is okay.

But if you’re unsure, simply remove your heat pump’s cover and have a look at the filters yourself. If you can see a build-up of dust and dirt, then it’s time for a clean!

→Related article: Daikin: New Zealand’s Favourite Heat Pumps

How to clean heat pump filters

Removing the filter(s) is relatively simple. For more details of your model’s filters, check its instruction manual. But in most models, you lift the front cover and slide out the filter. Easy as that.

To clean the filters, take them to a bath/shower or outside, and spray with a neutral or mild cleaner. Think something along the lines of a kitchen surface spray and wipe. Don’t use solvents or harsh cleaners. You should then thoroughly rinse the air filters, and then let them dry fully before placing them back into the heat pump.

Some heat pump providers also suggest gently vacuuming the filters, to lift out dust and dirt. Again, check your instruction manual before cleaning.

Whichever method you go for, it’s important your cleaning is careful. Heat pump filters are delicate and prone to tearing. But if you do rip your filters, you should be able to order replacements from your heat pump provider.


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Canstar Blue’s latest review of NZ power companies compares them on customer satisfaction. The table above is an abridged version of our full results, available here.

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author andrew broadley

About the author of this page

This report was written by Canstar Content Producer, Andrew Broadley. Andrew is an experienced writer with a wide range of industry experience. Starting out, he cut his teeth working as a writer for print and online magazines, and he has worked in both journalism and editorial roles. His content has covered lifestyle and culture, marketing and, more recently, finance for Canstar.


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