Is it Safe to Add Essential Oils to Furnace Air Filters?

Is it Safe to Add Essential Oils to Furnace Air Filters?

Is it Safe to Add Essential Oils to Furnace Air Filters?How do you get rid of that stale, musty smell in your home? A lot of people buy expensive, plug-in air fresheners to keep their houses smelling fresh over time, but there’s a better, more efficient way: add some essential oils to your HVAC system’s air filter.

Benefits of Essential Oils

Is adding scented oils to your HVAC system is safe? Actually, they’re safer than regular, air fresheners. They’re all natural, whereas plug-in fresheners are full of chemicals that can pollute your air. They’re a better value for your money, too. You use just a few drops at a time, so one bottle can last for months, instead of buying a new air freshener every time the smell fades.

Plus, instead of buying a new device to circulate the scent, you’re adding it to something else you’re already buying and replacing regularly: your air filter. This helps reduce waste and minimize your carbon footprint.

How It Works

First, buy a new HVAC filter. Get one with a high MERV rating, to clean your air thoroughly and eliminate allergens and other contaminants. Next, choose which essential oils you want to use.

You can get a few different scents if you want. Just be sure that they’re all smells that everyone in the family enjoys. In addition to their scents, many essential oils have other helpful properties. Eucalyptus kills fungus and guards against bacteria, while cinnamon and lemon prevent viruses from spreading.

Put about 20 drops of oil onto the filter. You can mix different scents if you like. Once it’s done, install the filter. As air flows past it, it picks up the scent of the oils, spreading it throughout your home.

Finally, don’t forget to change your filter regularly. In fact, when the scent fades, it can be a reminder to replace your air filter, to keep your air clean and your home smelling fresh and wonderful at the same time.

To learn more about air filters and what you can do with them, contact us at Powers Heating & Air. Peachtree City trusts us for all of their HVAC needs.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040. 


  1. […] inexpensive and safe whole-house scenting, add about 20 drops of essential oil to your furnace filter. You can do this when it’s time to change your furnace […]

  2. Thanks for pointing out that adding scents to your HVAC system can help make sure that your house doesn’t have a stale, musty smell. I think that if you were dealing with a bigger commercial property it would be smart to look into getting an air duct scent system that could help make sure your building smelled good and that you didn’t have to do a ton of work to get that smell. I think that would also help customers or other people feel more comfortable which would be good too and would probably help with sales.

    • Eileen says:

      This came up when I was googling for using essential oil on my furnace filter. It is important to note that several essential oils are known to be toxic to pets, either through direct contact or diffusers. I don’t think this would be much different than a diffuser. Please do your research and exercise caution in which essential oils you use.

  3. Peter says:

    Best to put the drops of oils at the rear or back side of the filter otherwise the scent will instantly be filtered out by the filter initially! So add the drops on the rear back of filter media material!!!

  4. Lynne says:

    Essential oils can be very harmful to cats (not sure about other pets). I used to diffuse essential oils in my home and basically intoxicated my cat. I had to throw all the windows and doors open to air the place out. I would recommend for people with cats that they NOT use essential oils in their HVAC system.

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