As fall approaches we start to think about how well our furnace will do to keep us warm when the temperatures start to drop. The last thing you want is to deal with a furnace that breaks down on you when you need to start using it. You also want to make sure it’s safe and as energy efficient as possible.
Ways to Make Sure Your Furnace is Ready for Cold Weather
1. Change furnace filters. The best way to make your furnace last longer is to change filters regularly. They should be changed every three months. Some even suggest every monthly. If you don’t think they need to be changed monthly, then at least take a look them to see where they’re at as far a dirt accumulation. Ensuring the filters are clean will prevent particles from getting into your HVAC system and will extend the life of the furnace.
2. Framing space around furnace. The area around your furnace needs to be free of clutter and debris. Anything that could possibly catch fire needs to be removed from the area around the furnace. It’s also smart keep items off the top of the furnace or in front of the air ducts and return vents. It would be terrible to realize that a fire started because you were being messy.
3. Test furnace temperature system. Set the thermostat a few degrees higher than room temperature after you switch it to heating. You should hear the heat kick on within a minute. If you don’t hear it, take the cover off and make sure the wire connections are secure. Hire professionals if you don’t feel comfortable doing this. If the connections are secure, then check that the power source to the HVAC system is turned on. If it still doesn’t work, you may have to check the furnace fan, heat pump or blower. But you should really call the professionals. Don’t wait for the first cold day to test the system.
4. Save on energy bills by installing programmable thermostat. We all want to save money, and you can save some by installing a programmable thermostat. These thermostats allow you to set the furnace temperatures to varying conditions depending on your preferences to save energy. For example, you can program it to be warmer at night and cooler when no one is home. Some of these thermostats let you use a smart device to control them.
5. Prevent carbon dioxide poisoning by having heat exchanger cleaned. Cleaning the heat exchanger is the best way to prevent leaks. The heat exchanger should be cleaned by a professional when it is disabled and should be done once a year. The technician will also be able to see if there are any cracks that can cause dangerous carbon monoxide to leak into your home.
6. Prevent dirty air in the home. Hot air is blown into your home from the furnace through ducts or vents. Make sure they are clean, otherwise dust and debris will be blown into your home. Remove the vent covers and use a vacuum cleaner to reach what you can or hire professionals to clean the ducts thoroughly.