Has your furnace had its check-up?
Most of us are content to let things go. That is, until they break. For many, this is fine until it’s their furnace, and it quits working on one of the coldest nights of the year. When this happens, more often than not it’s a lack of upkeep and maintenance to blame.
Your furnace is just like your car when it comes to regular maintenance. Your car requires clean oil and filters, tire rotations and brake inspections to keep it reliable and safe for you and your family. Your furnace needs the same kind of care. If you want your furnace to be reliable, efficient and safe, it must be regularly maintained.
Why It’s Important:
Safety – Just as many people don’t realize their furnace needs maintenance, the safe operation of the heating unit is also often overlooked. Sadly each year on the news we will hear of at least one family who has been accidentally poisoned by carbon monoxide gas.
If you have a gas furnace, it’s very important to have it inspected at least once a year to avoid the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide, a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas, is produced from the burning of fossil fuel. The most common sources for the gas are oil and gas-powered furnaces and wood burning stoves.
When someone suffers from carbon monoxide poisoning, physical symptoms could appear as fatigue, chest pain, impaired vision, headaches, dizziness, confusion, nausea and can sometimes be fatal in higher concentrations.
A professional inspection will include a check of the carbon monoxide levels produced by your furnace. This is particularly important if you own an older unit with heat exchangers susceptible to cracking. It’s also a good preventive measure to have a carbon monoxide detector installed near the furnace.
In addition to carbon monoxide concerns, a professional tune-up will include an inspection of the furnace for loose wires or signs of corrosion, burning or exposed metal along insulated wires. If your furnace is gas powered, a thorough inspection of the gas line might also be a good safety measure. The line should be inspected for leaks and the current pressure should be evaluated. Gas pressure that is too high can lead to an increased risk for carbon monoxide poisoning and can also cause the unit to over fire and use more gas than is really needed.
Performance – If your furnace isn’t running efficiently, it’s costing you money – more money than you should be spending. It’s also costing you the comfort you deserve. Professional tune-ups can help improve the performance and efficiency of your furnace.
Regardless of the type of furnace you own, regular cleaning and upkeep is a must if your unit is to run efficiently and without fail. Professional technicians are experienced and trained to identify weaknesses and potential problems that can cause the unit to fail. They also have the knowledge to assess and clean the complex electrical components of your furnace.
Regular maintenance not only helps you avoid unexpected breakdowns, but it also can significantly improve the life of the unit. With annual tune-ups, your furnace can afford you more years of reliable comfort.
What You Can Do:
- While it’s certainly important to have your heating unit professionally maintained at least once a year, don’t forget there are things you can do on your own, too. The easiest, and one of the most important, is to change your system’s air filter regularly.
- The air filter is vital to helping keep particulates like dust and other debris out of the unit. It helps your furnace run more smoothly and efficiently. Your air filter should be changed ever 1-3 months depending on the type you use.
- You can also regulate how often you are running your unit. The less you need the unit to perform, the less wear and tear you are placing on it. Especially if you work during the day or are regularly away from home for longer durations of time, installing a programmable thermostat can help you reduce the strain on your unit.
- If your furnace seems to be running just fine, scheduling an annual tune-up might seem like an unnecessary expense. However, the peace of mind and improved comfort you get in return is well worth your time and money both now and in the long run.
If you’d like to schedule a furnace tune-up now, Bradbury Brothers is your leading HVAC specialist. Give us a call at 281-651-5484 or on our website at www.BradburyBrothers.com.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Bradbury Brothers services most of southern Montgomery County including The Woodlands, Conroe, Magnolia, Montgomery, Oak Ridge North, Pinehurst, Shenandoah as well as northern Harris county including Cypress, Klein, Spring and Tomball.