When temperatures drop in Calgary, furnace heating becomes the key to a healthy and happy home.
However, it can also become dangerous if the proper furnace safety precautions are not observed. At
Here at Distinct Heating & Cooling, we get quite a few questions about cooling systems this time of year. One of the more common ones is whether you require a cover for your outdoor condensing unit. Before putting a cover over your outdoor unit, it is important to consider the following:
1. Covers can do more harm than good. Your A/C unit is designed to deal with dry, semi-arid climates, like we get here in Calgary. When we do receive precipitation, it is normally short-lived and the sun and wind dries the snow or rain fairly quickly. Putting a cover over the unit prevents the sun and wind from drying moisture that can accumulate underneath. Some liners tend to absorb moisture and retain it, where it is close to the unit and results in rust since the moisture is kept in contact with the unit longer than it would be if it were exposed to the sun and wind.
2. The paint used on the unit was design for outdoor conditions and can remain exposed to the elements year round. Newer units are coated in high quality, automotive-grade paints, which are resistant to weathering and corrosion.
3. Your A/C unit could be damaged if it is ran with the cover still over the outdoor condensing unit. While this might seem obvious, on that first warm day in spring, or on the off chance we get an extremely warm fall or winter day, you might forget the unit is covered and switch on the A/C system. Running the A/C system with a cover still on deprives the unit of its ability to cool properly and can result in overheating, damage, and complete system failure.
If is for the above reasons, Distinct Heating & Cooling does not recommend winter covers. However, there is one situation where we would consider covering the outdoor condensing unit: When it lies directly under or beside a large tree or bush that will drop leaves and debris throughout the fall and winter. In this case, the cover keeps the leaves and debris from getting inside the unit where it can cause damage to the internal mechanism.
Before you rush to put a cover on your condensing unit this fall, remember:
If you have further questions about your air conditioning system, heating system, or any other questions regarding your home comfort needs, please call us at Distinct Heating & Cooling We would be happy to spend some talking with you and answering your questions., we came up with the following tips and suggestions to ensure that you and your loved ones not only stay warm, but also safe during the colder months of the year.
Start Me Up!
When starting up your furnacefor the first time in the fall you may perceive a peculiar smell. This can be normal as your furnace may have collected dust sitting idle during the summer months. The dust burns quickly and the smell should dissipate. However, if the strange odor persists, shut off the furnace and consult a qualified professional. Be aware of leaky valves or pipes, as gas can escape and be incredibly dangerous. Don’t hesitate to call Distinct Heating & Cooling or the gas company right away if this happens.
Maintain a clean area around your furnace. Do not store chemicals such as paint thinners, gasoline or aerosols in the area surrounding your furnace; they are extremely flammable! Keep the area free from clutter. This includes garbage, laundry, old rags, or wood scraps that can easily become a fire hazard.
Distinct Heating & Cooling, we recommend changing your air filter every 2 to 3 months. This simple – but often overlooked tip prevents your Calgary furnace from becoming clogged and possibly overheating. An overworked system may increase the risk of a carbon monoxide leak. Also, a dirty filter will allow dirt and other particles to interfere with your furnace’s components causing a number of efficiency, performance, and safety issues.
Furnace safety in your home continues with the proper detection. Every floor of your house should have at least one smoke detector and one carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide is very real and dangerous, however, with the excellent detectors available on the market coupled with annual maintenance puts this threat at minimal risk.
Also, be sure that all these devices are working properly, so test them at least once every month. The average lifespan of a detector is about ten years. Batteries should be replaced once per year, but always keep a spare set on hand.
Furnaces are machines comprised of complicated parts and moving components. To operate properly, and ensure safety, these parts and components require periodic inspection. At Distinct Heating & Cooling, we recommend yearly inspections and tune ups of your Calgary furnace and home comfort equipment.
We offer an annual 30 point maintenance inspection that takes care of your furnace so that you don’t have to think about it. We will inspect & test for gas pressure & leaks, air flow, thermostat operation, safety controls, ignition system, CO testing, condition of burner tubes and many more items.
We are On Call
At Distinct Heating & Cooling, we have the tools, skills, and experience to provide you with the peace of mind that comes with everything being up to code and within the proper safety requirements of your Calgary furnace.
If you have any other safety questions or furnace concerns, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. We are on call and always happy to help!