September 22 was the first official day of autumn; is your furnace ready for the coming months of hard work? This time of year, you’ll need to start preparing for cold days and even colder nights. Here are ten reasons to have your furnace tuned up.
10. Know what’s going on in there. Are there wear-and-tear parts that are nearing the end of their life cycle? Any other obvious repairs that need to be made? A technician can pinpoint anything that needs to be done. If your system is older than about ten years, you can even get an idea of how much longer it’ll last.
9. Extend the life of your unit. A furnace that has been maintained regularly is likely to last 3-5 years longer than one that has not been. With replacement costs in the multiple thousands of dollars, those extra years can save you a lot.
8. Keep the warranty in effect. Every furnace manufacturer requires annual maintenance to keep your system under warranty.
7. A dirty furnace circulates dirty air. The warm, moist air in your furnace is a great place for bacteria, fungus, and viruses to grow. Then it all gets circulated when the warm air is pushed through your vents into your entire home. Getting your furnace cleaned can help keep indoor air clean all winter long.
6. A dirty furnace is more likely to break down. The number one cause of system failure is dirt build-up, which is easily preventable by changing air filters every 1-3 months and by having your furnace maintained.
5. A dirty furnace is an inefficient furnace. Dirt on the blower blades reduces the system’s airflow and makes it work harder than it has to. This increases the amount of energy the furnace uses and, by extension your utility bill, by 10-50%. It also shortens the life of the furnace.
4. Check for any hazardous conditions. A technician will check the flue pipe and/or chimney for any leaks or blockage such as animal nests. Any blockage or leak can mean poisonous carbon monoxide gas is entering your home.
3. Ensure that “whoosh” isn’t followed by a “boom.” The gas pilot safety system and safety circuit should be checked regularly to ensure they’re functioning correctly and safely.
2. Emergency repairs are expensive and inconvenient. If your furnace breaks down due to lack of maintenance, it’s not going to happen on a nice, warm, sunny day when the repair crews don’t have anything else going on. It’s going to happen on the coldest night of the winter when you have houseguests and the technicians have a dozen other homeowners ahead of you. Maintenance helps take that worry off your mind.
1. It’s easy. Schedule an appointment early in the season, on a day and time that is convenient for you, even if it’s weeks away. If you wait too long, you’ll have less choice of convenient times. Scheduling the appointment takes about five minutes, and the tune-up only takes about an hour. Then you can rest easy, comfy, and warm all winter long.