The furnace is one of the most essential appliances in your home. As fall gradually turns to winter, you will be running the furnace more and more to keep your home comfortably warm. Having your furnace inspected and repaired, if necessary, is a undertaking that should happen in the fall before snow starts to blow and you are in desperate need of heating. You should inspect the furnace once a year and change the filter to ensure efficient functioning and to keep your indoor air clean. If you suspect that there may be a problem with your furnace or if your furnace is not working, have it evaluated and repaired professionally before winter temperatures settle in.
In general, furnaces are reliable appliances and usually just require basic maintenance. The most basic regular maintenance you should always perform is changing the filters. This should be done every one to three months. These filters pick up a lot of dirt, hair, dander, and debris and can compromise your indoor air quality and make your furnace work harder to supply heat to your home if they are not regularly changed. If you have pets, you will likely need to change your furnace filters more regularly, but inspect them each month to determine whether they need to be replaced.
Inspect electrical components as well. The burner and heat exchanger are essential functional components and should be evaluated. If you are unsure about this, call an HVAC professional and have the entire furnace assessed. Making sure to keep up on furnace maintenance and keeping up on basic things like changing the filter will ensure that the furnace operates efficiently during the cold months. If you suspect more serious problems, an inspection should catch them.
Ventilation & Insulation
The furnace is only as good as the ductwork transporting the air throughout the house and the insulation keeping the warm air inside. Heat distribution and efficiency are as important as furnace functionality. If you have problems with your ventilation distributing air, you will need to have this professionally addressed. Likewise, make sure to assess your home’s insulation in the attic and seal and weatherstrip around the house to help further insulate and retain heat.
While the furnace may function well, if heat is not being properly distributed around your home and retained, you are not getting the benefit of the hard working furnace. Inspect the home for leaks or cracks and check for gaps around doors and windows. Sealing these and making sure your home is operating efficiently will help you keep your home warm all winter and keep energy costs down.