Seasonal furnace maintenance is critical to keeping your system running safely and efficiency. Furnace maintenance is recommended at least once a year, typically before heating season begins. However, for even more preventative care many people service their unit again once heating season is over. This is also a convenient time to have the air conditioning system tuned up before cooling season.
While it’s best for homeowners to leave the inspections and repairs to professionals, there are a few tips for conducting DIY furnace maintenance. To start, inspect the inside of the furnace for black soot or combustion residue. Turn up the thermostat so that the heat kicks on, and check the flames in the burner. If there is build-up and/or the flames are yellow and flickering, it’s a sign to call in a professional.
After you’ve tested the light and checked for residue, turn off the fuel supply and electrical power. Now it’s safe to clean around the unit and change the filter. Set a reminder if necessary; filter changes should be made a priority. A dirty and clogged filter will increase monthly bills and damage equipment. Changing the filter is literally one of the best things for the furnace, and the easiest task for even a beginner homeowner to accomplish.
Now you can remove the sides of the furnace and using a vacuum extender clean out any dust or dirt that has accumulated. It’s also important to wipe down the blades of the blower fan with a damp rag. If the furnace uses a fan belt, check its condition. Over time heat will dry out the rubber causing it to crack. This is a sign the fan belt needs to be replaced.
Even if you perform DIY maintenance, it’s still essential to have a professional conduct an inspection. This service includes a thorough check of all the electrical connections, thermostat settings and system components. An inspection can also locate other problems, like issues with the heat/cold source, distribution system and thermostat that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. Furnace inspections identify dangerous carbon monoxide leaks as well.
If you are experiencing problems with your furnace, or are interested in a professional inspection and maintenance, you can count on the technicians at Carroll Plumbing & Heating Inc. for quality, prompt and reliable service. Contact us today to learn more about our furnace maintenance services, inspections and repairs.