Is Your Furnace Ready for Winter?

It’s a good idea to do some quick maintenance to ensure that your home is winter ready.

Published November 23, 2021

For many homeowners, getting their furnace ready for the winter is simply a matter of switching their HVAC system over to heat. While that’ll definitely warm things up, it’s also a good idea to do some quick maintenance to ensure that your home is winter ready.

Check on your furnace

In case you didn’t know, your HVAC has filters that help maintain your system. These filters need to be changed every few months to ensure they’re operating at peak capacity. If you don’t have any filters handy, you could give it a quick cleaning with a vacuum. It’s also a good idea to clean the inside of your furnace. Take off the front panel and remove any dust and debris as it’ll help make your HVAC more efficient.

If you prefer to have a professional take a look at your furnace before the winter, you could schedule a tune-up. By having an expert come look at your HVAC, they can help ensure everything is prepared for the season. They can also help flag any issues of concern so it doesn’t surprise you later.

Inspect your thermostat

Your thermostat ties in directly with your HVAC so you may want to test it early. Set it to heat and then set it a few degrees higher than the current room temperature. You should hear the heat pumping throughout your home shortly. After a few minutes, put your hand over a vent to ensure that it’s actually warm air coming through.

If your heat doesn’t appear to be working, double-check that you switched things over to heat (at your HVAC and thermostat). If that appears to be right, it’s possible that your thermostat has a loose connection or there’s something wrong with your HVAC. While it may be possible for you to fix these things, you may want to consider calling in a professional.

Clear your vents

Since your vents are responsible for transferring warm air from your furnace to all the rooms in your home, you’ll want to make sure they’re well maintained. One way to do this is to ensure they’re not blocked. Obstructions to the vent can prevent the natural airflow. Additionally, it could cause your HVAC to overheat since the air is not being distributed properly. You may also want to vacuum your vent panels and inside your vents. They may have collected some dust over the summer, so a quick vacuum can help improve air quality. 

Furnace replacement warning signs to consider

Keeping your furnace well maintained is something to consider as a homeowner. Not only can it help prolong the life of your HVAC, but it can also ensure that your home is kept warm. That said, every furnace will need to be replaced eventually. The question is, how do you know when to replace it? There’s no set answer, but you may want to be on the lookout for some warning signs below.

Average lifespan

Generally speaking, furnaces have a lifespan of about 15 years. If you know your furnace is around that age, you may want to start monitoring it a bit more closely. Once you’ve hit 15 years, you may want to start thinking about an upgrade as modern furnaces are more energy-efficient.

If you’ve also noticed that your electricity bills are going up while your usage has remained the same, it may be an indicator that there’s an issue. By switching to an energy-efficient unit, it can help reduce the amount of electricity used to heat your home. As a result, your electricity bills may decrease. Plus, there may be rebates and incentives available when you upgrade.

Uneven temperatures 

Are there rooms in your home that are warmer than others? Or have you noticed uneven temperatures throughout the day? This is another sign that your HVAC may not be operating properly. Some general maintenance may be able to correct this problem, but the odds are that your current furnace may no longer function properly. Getting a new system that’s appropriate for your home can help ensure even heat distribution.

The condition of your furnace

Take the time to really think about the condition of your furnace. Do you find it cycling on and off more frequently compared to previous years? Are there noticeable noises such as buzzes, hums, or rattles? Have you seen any rust or physical damage around your furnace? How about maintenance? Do you frequently have to call a technician to have your HVAC serviced? If you said yes to more than one of these questions, then it may be time to upgrade as your furnace is no longer working efficiently. 

Take the next step

Are you interested in getting a new HVAC system to prepare for the upcoming winter season? Contact a Local Home Pro professional now for a free in-home estimate. They’ll be able to walk you through your options and provide you with a no-obligation quote.

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