Why is HEPA Air Cleaner Emitting White Dust?

Hope somebody out there can tell me why my old Honeywell via Sears HEPA air cleaner is emitting white particles all of the same size. Although the pre-filter is new, it was in package for 9-12 months since I bought it. Is pre-filter a lemon, HEPA filter worn out (can be replaced) or is it time to junk the whole machine? Hate to waste the money on parts if machine needs to go.