The gas furnace is a major component of the heating, cooling, and air conditioning (HVAC) system of your home or office. The use of a gas furnace during winter allows you to keep warm. You might be using your gas furnace during spring, but when summer arrives, you will probably not need to use the gas furnace. Does that mean you can turn off the gas furnace? Are there disadvantages to turning off the gas furnace? Can you save on energy bills if you turn off the gas furnace? Can you extend the life of the gas furnace if you turn it off? Read on to find out the answers to these questions.
The Pros of Turning Off the Gas Furnace for the Summer
Many people believe that if they are not using the gas furnace, they will not be paying anything for gas or electricity bills for the furnace. That would be an incorrect assumption. Most types of gas furnaces will continue to use gas and electricity regardless of usage. There is a pilot light in a gas furnace that plays the key role of igniting the gas to switch on the gas furnace. If the pilot light is switched off, the gas furnace will not be able to switch on. As this pilot light is always on, the gas furnace continues to use natural gas at all times.
The pilot light in a gas furnace is expected to consume natural gas from anywhere between 6,000 to 9,000 BTUs per day, depending on the type of gas furnace. Although this consumption might sound insignificant compared to the heavy consumption of the gas furnace during winter, it will add to your gas bill and can become a substantial amount over the summer. There are other electrical components of a gas furnace, such as a thermocouple and other sensors, which will also continue to use electricity if the gas furnace is on.
There will be a positive environmental impact on switching off the gas furnace for the summer. The gas furnace is going to produce certain types of gases such as carbon monoxide that are detrimental to the environment. With the gas furnace switched of the summer, the negative impact on the environment will be minimized.
The Cons of Turning Off the Gas Furnace for the Summer
A major disadvantage of turning off the gas furnace is that can allow moisture to accumulate on metal parts of the gas furnace. Moisture on metal can result in rust and corrosion of the gas furnace. This can lead to serious damage to the furnace including leaks. For regions with high humidity levels, this problem can be worse. When the pilot light is on, it can evaporate the moisture in the system. With an inactive gas furnace, the moisture will be allowed to accumulate. This problem can be solved by switching on the gas burner periodically to dry any moisture in the furnace. An active gas furnace also keeps away all types of insects, who would find the gas furnace an ideal home with its cool and moist conditions.
Needing to switch on the gas furnace brings us to another disadvantage of switching off the gas furnace for the summer. If you are not familiar with how to switch on the pilot light or check if the gas valves are open, then you might struggle to properly switch on the gas furnace. There can also be safety issues when turning on the gas furnace after an extended period of inactivity. You need to make sure there are no leaks or other faults that might have developed with the gas furnace. You might need the services of a professional HVAC technician to help with switching on the furnace without any issues.
Certified and Experienced HVAC Technicians
If you own a gas furnace, we highly recommend you use the service of professional HVAC technicians for maintenance services. At HB Home Service Team, we offer a complete range of HVAC series including furnace maintenance, repair, installation, and cleaning services. We serve areas of central PA, the Baltimore region, and the surrounding locations. Apart from services for the gas furnace, our HVAC technicians can also provide services for the air conditioner, boiler, maintenance agreements, plumbing, and more. We offer services for residential and commercial properties and we offer 24/7 emergency HVAC service. For service scheduling, we can be reached through our website, or you can give us a call.