PATSY R. BRUMFIELD: Big Filter conspires to undue us

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

Sometimes, my aging mind asks questions at the very crux of the universe.
Sometimes, not so much.
Tending to a household and working full time have their challenges. I try to be especially diligent about changing the filters in the air system intake ports.
Each time I do so, I carefully write the date so that I can check when I think it’s probably time to change them again. The filters’ manufacturer claims they are good for up to three months, but there are times around here when that isn’t possible or hygienic.
Years ago, I bought a tall step-ladder just for this purpose. So, I carefully place it under the intake port, position the new filter within easy reach and then stretch upward to unlock the vent, remove the offending filter and replace it with a gorgeous new one.
When it’s all done, like mopping and surface-cleaning, I feel extremely satisfied.
How nice that it should take so few things so simple.
But there’s a crazy side to this story – do you know what size “hole” your air filter fits?
Mine are 14x30x1.
My neighbor Tina’s are 14x24x1. My brother’s 16x25x1.
If you look on the shelves of every big-box homestore, the assortment of filter sizes will astound you.
But no matter where I look locally, there are no 14x30x1 filters. Have mercy, I’d like to buy local, but for this, I must order online to Mobile, Ala.
Go figure.
Why are all these holes so many sizes?
Isn’t there some universal small, medium and large that will work and make life easier for the rest of us?
Or is this some kind of conspiracy by Big Filter to foment an ever-expanding business opportunity every time somebody builds a new house or installs a new indoor climate system?
I bet the multi-billionaire Koch Brothers know something about this.
I raise this issue with plenty of time before the next and last presidential debate: Misters Obama and Romney, why are there so many different air filter sizes? Are yours shelf-bought or custom?
I’m just sorry I wasn’t vocal enough before the vice president event. I’m sure Joe Biden and Paul Ryan have answers to this conundrum.
This seems extreme.
This seems unnecessary.
It’s also wasteful and confusing, isn’t it?
I’d say, let’s get an act of Congress to prohibit Big Filter from making more than six standard sizes.
Anybody who needs a different size must petition the EPA for a waiver.
I don’t know who makes these things, but surely it can’t be all that terrible to work out an exception. Or maybe that’s how we got where we are today.
Heck, I say, just cut your hole to fit!

Patsy R. Brumfield writes a Thursday column. Contact her at (662) 678-1596 or patsy.brumfield@journalinc.com. Follow her on Twitter @realnewsqueen.