With the days becoming cooler, it’s time to make sure your furnace is prepared for the coming winter months. In this blog, heating and cooling contractor Schmitt Heating & Air Conditioning shares a complete pre-winter furnace maintenance checklist.
Before You Begin
Make sure your HVAC system is getting the attention it deserves. Your furnace should be inspected during the fall season, while the air conditioning system should be inspected before the summer season. If you find any problems that require repairs, schedule an appointment with your local HVAC contractor.
Turn Off the HVAC Power
One reason why you should perform furnace maintenance in the fall is that you’ll be spending a few hours without a working furnace. Doing this when it’s already cold can make the house uncomfortable for you and your family. Before attempting any maintenance work,however, make sure the HVAC system isn’t connected to a power source to minimize the risk of electrical shock.
Clean the Furnace
Give the furnace a good once-over with a vacuum cleaner and a soft nylon brush, concentrating on the base of the furnace and the blowers. A well-maintained furnace should have no fuel left over from the last time it was used. If you’re not comfortable cleaning the furnace yourself, or if you find leftover fuel in it, schedule an appointment with your trusted HVAC contractors.
Replace the Air Filters
Air filters should ideally be replaced once every three months. If you haven’t done this recently, do so now. Air filters trap impurities such as dust, pollen and mold spores, and become clogged over time. If not replaced, clogged air filters can reduce furnace heating efficiency. If your current type of air filters tend to get clogged quickly, consider switching to higher-efficiency filters.
Other Things to Inspect
Before you put everything back and turn on the furnace, make sure you’ve checked the following for leaks, dirt and corrosion:
- Combustion air opening
- Flue pipe
- Drive belt
- Air registers
- Condensate drain lines
Lastly, make sure to test the thermostat and see that its settings are correct. You may need to replace the battery and/or perform a reset. Note that doing the latter means you might have to reprogram its weekday-weekend settings.