How keeping filters of everyday items clean will save you money

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Do you know you can extend the life of some of the things you use daily with one simple step? In a partnership with Consumer Reports, 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney tells you how it can save you money. (KGO-TV)

Do you know you can extend the life of some of the things you use daily with one simple step? In a partnership with Consumer Reports, 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney tells you how it can save you money.

The little machines that improve your life by cleaning your carpets, cooling the air, or drying your duds, will last longer and work better, if you keep their filters clean.

"In general, if air can't get into the motor, a machine has to work harder. This puts a strain on the overall appliance, making it less effective," said Paul Hope, Consumer Reports Home Editor. "It can mean you'll have to replace it earlier than you should have to."

Your over-the-stove microwave has a filter beneath it to catch grease in the air. Cleaning it with warm soapy water in the sink, twice a year, will keep the fan working properly and prevent a sticky film on your cabinets. Check your manual to see if your filter is dishwasher safe.

A dryer with a thick blanket of lint in the filter, has to work harder and longer to dry your clothes. It also uses more energy, and can pose a fire hazard. Make it a habit to clear the filter between loads.

If your vacuum is overheating, losing suction or blowing dirt back into the air, clogged filters could be the culprit. Manufacturers tell Consumer Reports, most people don't know where they are. Check around the bag for these small washable filters, and open the back panel to inspect these paper filters meant to catch fine particles. Your vacuum will perform better and last longer.

"If you have a bagless model, you'll need to clean or replace the filters more often," shares Hope.

Dehumidifiers are simple machines that can go ignored because they're usually down in the basement. Take a moment to pull out the filter, and give it a good rinse and dry, to improve your air quality and your unit's performance. You will also prohibit the growth of mold, mildew, and mites.

Click here for a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

All Consumer Reports material Copyright 2017 Consumer Reports, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Consumer Reports is a not-for-profit organization which accepts no advertising. It has no commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site. For more information visit consumer.org.

Related Topics:
homeconsumerconsumer concernsshopping7 On Your Sideapplianceshome tipSan Francisco
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