Why do you need to change the oil in your car and go to the dentist? Just like your car and teeth, your furnace needs to be inspected and cleaned periodically. If you have a cavity, you can’t just let it go, or it could become very painful and cause serious issues. If you don’t change the oil in your car, it could break down permanently. If you don’t have your furnace inspected annually, you could risk your health and safety and end up burning a very large hole in your wallet.
This blog post is part of Pacific's Heating and Cooling Series.
Benefits to Annual Furnace Preventive Maintenance
When your furnace is tuned up, it will be able to work much more efficiently and perform optimally for you throughout the heating season. Running a highly efficient system will also cost less than running a dirty or underperforming system.
Preventive maintenance can extend the life of your furnace. According to Energy Star, dirt and neglect are the leading causes of system failure. An inefficient or dirty system will be forced to work harder to produce the results you want, which will cause it to wear down faster and shorten its usable life.
Better Indoor Air Quality
If your furnace isn’t cleaned regularly, it could collect and circulate allergens (dust, mold spores, pollen, etc.) and other contaminants throughout your home for you and your family to breathe. Debris can also build up, which will prevent your system from working as efficiently as it could and could pose a fire hazard.
During an inspection, your heating contractor can determine the carbon monoxide level to make sure it’s not an issue; if it is, it can be immediately addressed. Skipping the inspection could allow the “silent killer” to leak into your home and threaten your life, and you might not notice until it's too late.
DIY Furnace Maintenance
You can clean and inspect your furnace…if you know what you’re doing. Without the knowledge a heating contractor gains through education and training, you won’t be able to perform all the tasks necessary to clean your system and check all components for proper operation and efficiency. Make sure the heating contractor you decide to work with goes through Energy Star’s Overall System Maintenance Checklist.
In addition to having your furnace inspected annually, you also need to check, clean, and change the filter regularly (typically every one to three months), change the batteries in your carbon monoxide detector once a year, and make sure nothing is blocking the airflow from the registers throughout your home. These simple tasks will help keep your home cleaner and safer. If a small problem arises, contact a heating professional immediately. These small issues could end up damaging your system and lead to costly repairs.
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