The start of the cold season is the worst time to learn your furnace may have a problem. Instead of waiting until the first cold day arrives, you can take steps to make sure your furnace is ready in advance. We have put together a list of helpful tips that will help when you make the switch from cooling to heating, preparing your furnace and HVAC system for the winter months ahead.
Get Your Furnace Ready For Winter
Tune Up Your Furnace
Setting up an annual HVAC and furnace assessment is critical for every home. Most inspections will cover 12 vital points that ensure your furnace and heating systems are operating efficiently. This includes checking the wiring for faults, looking for leaks in the valves, and even ensuring the gas flow is up and running correctly. Checkups will allow for problems to be spotted and repaired before winter sets in and before they turn into costly problems.
Change Your Filters Regularly
You should change filters in your air vents once each quarter or more often if you happen to live in a higher humidity area. Homes that have pets should also change their filters more often to prevent dander and pet hair from becoming a problem. Clogged or dirty filters can prevent hot air from the furnace from circulating correctly. Dirty filters can also restrict airflow and cause the components on the furnace to break down. You can change the filters on your own or have a professional service come out on a regular schedule to ensure everything is switched out and operating correctly.
Clean Out The Air Ducts
While you are checking and replacing the filters, it is also a good idea to clean out the air ducts. If you have recently remodeled or if you have pets, the dust and hair stuck in the ducts will get blown into the air and the furnace as soon as you turn it on for the winter. This can irritate allergies and also cause the furnace to malfunction. Cleaning the air ducts twice a year is usually enough to keep a furnace and HVAC system from running into any problems when winter rolls around.
Do A Checkup on Your Thermostat
Check your home’s thermostat to ensure that it can switch over to heat before the weather actually turns cold. If you use your thermostat to regulate your air conditioning, chances are it is ready and will work smoothly for the furnace as well. However, if you notice that the heat does not engage even after you turn it on, your thermostat may be malfunctioning. They are generally on the more affordable side so instead of trying to fix it, simply replace the thermostat completely. This is also an opportunity to upgrade to a programmable thermostat to help with keeping your home comfortable throughout the day and night.
Upgrade Your Old Furnace
Technology and climates change over time. It makes sense that you will need to upgrade certain features in your home as a result. If your furnace or HVAC system is more than 20 years old, now is the perfect time for an upgrade. This will save you money on energy costs, and it will end up being cheaper than constantly repairing parts of the system that keep failing. Regardless of how long you plan to stay in your home, upgrading your old furnace so it is ready for the winter season is a smart choice.
Consider Purchasing a Maintenance Program
Regardless of the age of your furnace, it is a good idea to purchase a maintenance program and even an extended warranty if available. This will ensure that your furnace is serviced on a regular basis and any potential problems are caught before they end up being expensive problems. Warranties also ensure that when something does go wrong, you can have it repaired at a fraction of what it would otherwise cost.
Bits & Bobs To Check
In addition to changing the air filters or checking the thermostat, there are a few other areas to check ahead of the winter season. Covering the AC condenser will help keep it safe during the winter and help your furnace to run more efficiently. Cleaning the heat exchanger and the blower motor is also important. This will prevent dust and debris from clogging your furnace when you turn it on. Always check the chimney or vent systems to make sure they are clear. While you are checking these areas, also double-check your carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly. With these simple tips to prepare your furnace for winter, your home will be winter-ready and keep you warm all season long.
Additional Reading: Purchasing Energy-Efficient Residential Furnaces
Air Care Heating and Air Conditioning – Residential & Commercial HVAC Services in Omaha & Council Bluffs
Air Care Heating and Air Conditioning is a full-service HVAC company located in Council Bluffs & Omaha. We know how important well-functioning heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems are to your home or business, especially living in the Midwest. No matter what your heating and cooling needs, we provide a variety of heating and cooling HVAC services committed to exceeding your expectations with 100% customer satisfaction. Contact us today for your routine maintenance service, repairs, or installation requests -and let us show you the difference.