While furnace maintenance should always be performed by qualified technicians, there are a few things homeowners can take a look at during the year in order to give peace of mind that their equipment is working as it should. Taking a proactive approach in between visits from the professionals is key to keeping your home warm and comfortable, extending the life of your furnace, and reducing the need for expensive repair bills down the road. Let’s explore five basic things homeowners can do to ensure that their furnace is operating efficiently:
Change the Filter Regularly
Furnace filters improve the air we breathe by trapping dirt, dust, and debris to keep allergens out of the air. But did you know their main function is to protect the furnace itself? Filters protect the furnace’s blower fan from dust and debris pulled in by the return duct. For optimal performance, replace the filters at least every three months. A handy way to remember is to replace the filter on the first day of a new season. To replace a disposable filter, simply open the filter compartment door, slide the old filter out and place in a bag, then insert the new filter.
Clean Around the Equipment
Dust and debris will accumulate around the equipment, so wipe down the unit and vacuum every three to six months. If you open up the equipment to clean, be sure to check that the door is firmly secured when done. Most modern furnaces have a switch that indicates whether the door is on or off, and the furnace will not start up again unless the door is in proper position.
For safety reasons, turning the furnace “OFF” while you clean is a good rule of thumb!
Listen to Your Furnace
Any unusual noise can be a sign that there is something not quite right with your furnace. Make a note of when and where in the heating cycle you hear the noise – is it before the furnace kicks in? After the motor has been initiated? Is there popping and banging after the furnace has been running for a while? Or is it when it shuts off? If you are concerned that the furnace will be humming smoothly when the technician arrives, record a video or audio clip on your phone for playback. These are helpful indicators for your technicians as to what could be causing the concern.
You can help keep your furnace running smoothly and efficiently each year in your Calgary home by performing these basic steps. For optimal performance, just give us a call and we’ll send out a technician to perform a thorough inspection and cleaning. Learn more about our 30-point furnace tune-up!