While regular furnace cleaning and maintenance helps to prevent problems, it also keeps your furnace operating efficiently. An efficient furnace reduces energy waste and means lower utility bills.
ClimateCare is Canada’s largest network of independent heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems contractors, and they were kind enough to share this information with us.
How can you be sure your furnace needs repairs?
Homeowners should be checking the furnace filter on a regular basis, and changing it monthly during the winter. Not only will it keep the air clean, but will also reduce energy costs. But how does one know if the furnace needs repairs?
- If it’s cold in your home even though the furnace is set to a toasty warm level, your furnace probably needs repairs.
- If you hear a strange sound coming from the furnace, be it a rattle, a squeal or an out-of-place hum, your furnace probably needs repairs.
- If the temperature in your bedroom is sharply different from the temperature in your children’s bedrooms, your furnace probably needs repairs.
- If the furnace turns on and off repeatedly without reaching the desired temperature in the home, your furnace probably needs repairs.
- If you are being proactive definitely call us for a maintenance service call before these problems arise!
Is it OK to skip furnace maintenance?
Some homeowners don’t think long about the consequences of skipping furnace maintenance. Most likely a furnace will be fine for another year, unless of course it’s not. Problems develop for all kinds of reasons.
Early detection is the key, and an annual furnace check-up will identify little problems before they become disasters. If you compare it to ‘oil changes for your car’ regular maintenance from a qualified HVAC technician goes a long way to extending the life of your furnace.
What can go wrong?
- POISONOUS AIR FLOW: One of the most extreme consequences of skipping annual maintenance is the risk for carbon monoxide poisoning.While completely preventable, more than a thousand people die every year from it CO2 poisoning.
It is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that is present when fuel burns in places like your gas furnace or fireplace.
And to make sure your family is protected in the event of a problem with your furnace, always make sure you have a working carbon monoxide alarm in the house.
- Debris Build-up: Not toxic, but not good either. Skipping furnace maintenance (and the equipment inspection that comes with actual maintenance tasks) leaves debris to build up throughout the HVAC system.
It doesn’t take long for the filter to become clogged with dust, dirt and debris, reducing airflow, air quality and making your system work harder than it should.
Once your air filter is no longer capable of keeping allergens and particles out, the furnace itself, along with the air ducts and registers, become coated with nasty airborne particles. And if they’re in the ducts, they’re in your lungs.
- Uncomfortable drafts: Annual maintenance helps your furnace maintain consistent airflow and heat distribution throughout the house. Every time you skip a maintenance cycle, the cold spots in your home become more noticeable.
Cold spots signal stagnant air, and stagnant air can lead to mould behind the paint or wallpaper on your walls and cracking of perishable materials like caulk around windows.
To combat this, you’ll crank up the thermostat. Your bills will snowball and drain the bank account faster than you expect.
What’s included in most Furnace Maintenance Plans?
- Clean or replace furnace air filter
- Clean furnace components, including blower assembly, fans, pulleys and belts
- Check electrical connections & wires; pipe fittings & gas supply line; heat exchanger for cracks or corrosion
- Perform a 26 point furnace maintenance system inspection
A well maintained furnace can last up to a quarter of a century, but while regular maintenance is the best way to prolong the life of any home appliance, it isn’t a guarantee your furnace will never have a breakdown.
We would be thrilled to provide you with information that will enhance your home living experience.