The official start of winter is December 21, but waiting until then to perform heating unit maintenance at your home is like putting off a big school project until the night before it’s due.
Just like starting that school project early increases your chances of getting a good grade, doing maintenance on your system ensures that it will keep you warm when wintry weather arrives.
Here’s what your pre-winter maintenance should include:
1. Clear away dust
When your system was at work cooling your home, it was also pulling in dust from the outside. This dust can cut off airflow and force your heating system to work even harder. This can hurt your system, and cost you money. Cleaning the dust from your ducts can help you make sure your system runs more smoothly when winter comes.
2. Check your air filters
Just like your car, your HVAC system has air filters. And these filters have likely collected a lot of dust over the past few months. It’s a smart idea to change your filters a few times a year – maybe every two to three months – to keep your HVAC system running smoothly, but it’s vital that you have new filters installed before it gets cold.
3. Clean around your furnace
For many of us our basements are our primary storage space. But that often means that junk can pile up around the furnace. Your heating unit maintenance should include clearing away this clutter. When your system has room to breathe, it will function better.
And besides, having a bunch of old cardboard boxes piled around your furnace isn’t a great idea. Move them out and rid yourself of a fire hazard.
4. Check your thermostat
Have your heating bills seemed higher than normal the past few winters? It may be due to an inaccurate thermostat. A reliable thermostat can save you money and energy. If you’re still using the thermostat that came with your house, it might be time for an upgrade.
Installing a programmable thermostat lets you schedule your temperature settings. If you know that no one will be at home between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., you can set your unit to a lower temperature during those hours.
A few degrees can make a significant difference. For every degree, you can reduce energy usage in your home by three to five percent.
5. Look, listen, smell
Good heating unit maintenance involves using your senses. Turn on your heating system and spend a few minutes listening to it. Do you hear any weird crackling or popping sounds? Look at the furnace. Can you see smoke? And take a deep breath. Can you smell any strange odors? If you take a few minutes observing your system, you might spot – or hear, or smell – a problem before it gets too out of hand.
In the end, you should trust your heating system to professionals. Regular, preventive maintenance is the ideal way to keep your HVAC system running longer and to make sure that it is operating at the peak of efficiency and safety.
If you’re interested in tackling this project before the weather gets too cold, contact All Seasons Comfort Control. Our team will be happy to work with you to make sure your system is functioning at its best now, so you aren’t scrambling to warm your home this winter.