Your furnace needs to be properly maintained if you want it to function efficiently during those cold days and nights of winter. If you neglect to do regular maintenance, your furnace will almost certainly develop performance issues over time.
You can do some basic maintenance at home yourself to keep your furnace in good shape. However, if you suspect your furnace might have a serious issue, you should search online for “electricians near me” to find professionals to assist you.
DIY Care for Your Furnace
Here are some tasks you can do yourself to make your furnace work more effectively, before you get a technician to look at it:
- Make sure you replace the filters regularly. One of the main problems that furnace owners experience is dusty and clogged filters that need to be replaced. The intake filters should be changed every six months for the best performance. Clean filters will increase the airflow, and prevent your system from being overworked.
- Clean the furnace by wiping the outside with a damp cloth, and clean accessible areas with a vacuum. If dirt accumulates on the system, it can impact its airflow and efficiency.
- Check the vents and ducts in your home. The vents should be open, and must not have furniture or rugs blocking them. Consider having your ductwork cleaned if you haven’t had this done in a few years. Also, check the ducts that you can see for holes and cracks.
- Get a programmable thermostat. Many modern options allow you to control the temperature in your home via your phone or other devices, and you can adjust the settings based on the time of day or your preferences. Check your settings, and make sure you set it to the ideal temperature.
- Ensure proper ventilation for your furnace. Ensure the exhaust pipes are clear of potential blockages, such as leaves, nests, and so on. If you are unable to access some areas, get a professional technician to assist you.
When Do You Need Professional Help?
If you notice some of the following signs, it’s best that you get a professional technician to do a proper furnace inspection.
- You’ll know something is wrong with the thermostat if there is no definite change in the room temperature after the furnace has been running for a little while.
- If the furnace can’t stay on for a period of time, it probably needs repairs.
- If there’s a huge spike in your electricity bill, it could mean your furnace is struggling to work properly, and you should get a technician to look at it.
- If the sound of the furnace changes drastically, it should be inspected.
- If the pilot light color changes to yellow, it’s best to have it checked, as it could mean the furnace is not getting the right mix of gases.
- If your allergies are always flaring up and the air quality seems poor, have the furnace inspected immediately, as this can affect your family’s health.
- If the roof of your house is icy, this is most likely also an indication that your furnace is not working correctly. The heat travels upwards and melts the snow, which could cause an ice dam to form.
How Can a Yearly Tune-Up Help?
Regular maintenance by an experienced professional can extend the lifespan of your system, as important components can be repaired before they become seriously damaged. The specialist will be able to pick up issues during routine maintenance before they lead to costly repairs.
You also need to get yearly maintenance done, to prevent safety issues. A struggling, broken-down furnace can become a fire risk, release unhealthy gas fumes, and there’s even the possibility of a carbon monoxide leak that can be lethal to you and your family.
Your furnace is an integral part of your home, especially if you live in one of the colder states. The last thing you want is for it to break down on a freezing cold night. You can do a lot to keep your furnace in good shape, but if you suspect a serious problem, it’s essential to call a technician, who can do a proper inspection.