Having a furnace tune-up and maintenance is a good thing to do now before the cold weather starts. Believe it or not, fall is here! Before you know it, the temperatures will be 20 degrees lower than we have experienced in the last few months. By the time fall arrives, everyone is more than ready after living through another hot summer. But, is your furnace ready to meet the challenge of chilly nights and cooler days? By performing a tune-up and maintenance for your furnace, Ideal Services can help you be sure that the comfort of your home transitions smoothly from air conditioning to warmth. In this article, we give you eight (8) things to do to get your furnace ready for winter.
#1 Check that the Furnace Unit’s Power switch is ON
Sometimes, during the summer, the furnace could have been switched off inadvertently or on purpose. If yours has been turned off, find where the power switch is located on the unit. Many times the switch is in a metal enclosure. First, shut off power from the fuse box and, if your furnace unit has a secondary breaker located on or near to the unit, shut that off as well. If you find that there is a blown fuse or a tripped breaker, contact a licensed technician to come to inspect the unit to determine if there is a significant problem on the unit that could have caused it.
#2 Clean Area Around Furnace
You’ll want to clean around your furnace unit. Dirt and debris can congregate around the furnace during the year. Things like leaves, rodent nests, and insects can enter and crowd the furnace during the summer, blocking the airways. This blockage can cause an excessive build-up of heat and lethal gas such as carbon monoxide. To alleviate this as a fire hazard, clean up leaves and clutter or call a trained professional to inspect the unit and correct the problems.
#3 Check Furnace Air Filters
Check furnace air filters for dirt and dust buildup. These can lead to breathing problems and allergies. First, for safety, shut off the power to the furnace by turning off the circuit breaker at the main electrical panel. Clean filters and other aspects of the furnace-like coils and other airflow parts of the unit can cause the furnace to work harder than it should and also distribute allergens into your home. You should change the air filters every two to three months normally. But, if you have pets that shed or have breathing issues, you may want to change the filter more frequently to get rid of pollutants building up.
#4 Test the Thermostat
Turn on the furnace and check the thermostat while it is running. The thermostat should show that the house is warming. Be sure that the batteries for the thermostat are good. Most programmable thermostats have a warning light that flashes whenever the battery is low. Replace them if the light is flashing on the thermostat.
If it is working properly, you will feel the house getting warmer and it will show on the thermostat. If the batteries aren’t low and the house isn’t warming, call a local HVAC company like Ideal Services to inspect the system. It’s common to smell a little dust at first that is burning off. But, if you smell something for a long time, you may want to get that checked out. Also, if there are any strange noises that you haven’t heard before, definitely contact an HVAC company.
#5 Check for Drafts from Leaks at Doors and Windows
Look for areas in your home where heat can escape like cracks under doors and in windows. When you find drafty spots, take care of them in order to improve the energy efficiency of your heating system.
#6 Test the Safety Detectors
Before starting the furnace, be sure that the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. Low batteries and other electrical conditions can cause these detectors to malfunction in an emergency situation. It is important to have the units tested and to replace the batteries on a regular basis to keep your family safe.
#7 Check the Fuel Supply
If you heat with oil or propane, make sure the tank is full before cold weather arrives. If you heat with natural gas, don’t handle any of the components of the gas supply line or pilot light. We recommend that you contact 911 if you smell gas or suspect gas leakage.
#8 Get a Professional Inspection, Tune-Up, and Maintenance
Most furnace manufacturers recommend that you get a professional inspection with a unit tune-up and regular maintenance before the change of seasons. This service will keep the furnace functioning at optimum efficiency and extend the life of the system. By having proactive yearly maintenance, you can ensure that your home is safe as well as reduce costly breakdowns and repairs.
Contact Ideal Service for Furnace Tune-ups and Maintenance!
Ideal Services has a highly trained, professional team of technicians that provides furnace tune-ups and maintenance in order to prevent serious problems down the road. Call us at (919) 887-9680 or complete this easy form to get an appointment for your seasonal inspection!