Furnace maintenance is all about keeping the working parts of your furnace operating optimally. Furnaces are powerful heaters for homes, and it is important that they are checked regularly for efficiency. Furnaces use filters, air blowers, and a venting system to keep homes comfortably heated, according to the thermostat.
Maintaining the Furnace’s Temperature Control
Occasionally, furnaces will need to be adjusted so that they are reaching the set temperature. There is a temperature sensor on many furnaces, and many houses also have several different thermostats in different areas. Typically, there is at least one thermostat upstairs and one downstairs. If the thermostats do not have a good connection to the furnace, they won’t turn on fast enough or send enough heat through the vents to keep the house comfortable.
Keeping Vents Clear
As furnaces blow out warm air, they can send small amounts of dust and other debris through the heating ducts and out the vents throughout your home. To keep ducts and vents clear, you should have them checked and cleaned regularly. Even a little bit of dust and debris can add up and greatly reduce the air quality in your home.
Remember that the dust largely comes from the outside air that the furnace sucks in and treats before sending it through the ducts. If there is an outdoor furnace vent, you can help reduce dust by maintaining the area near the vent. You should also regularly clean the outside vent and any hosing attached to it that runs through to the furnace.
Replacing the Filter on Time
Filters prevent most dust and debris from getting into the furnace and being circulated through your indoor spaces. To keep the furnace efficient, you will need to replace the filter on schedule. The maintenance technician can help you assess how often you need to replace your filter, and you can also find this information from your furnace manufacturer.
Typically, you need to replace disposable filters at least every three months, but you may need to change them more frequently if you have pets or family members with asthma or other respiratory conditions. Electrostatic or washable filters should be rinsed, dried, and re-installed approximately once a month. These reusable filters will typically last several years before needing to be replaced.
Checking Internal Parts and Components
With use, furnaces experience wear on blower motors and other internal components. These parts also need regular cleaning as part of the annual tune-up. In addition to cleaning internal components, your technician will lubricate all moving parts and inspect everything inside the furnace, including wiring and wiring connections. These maintenance tasks are necessary to help your furnace reach its full lifespan. Most modern furnaces can last up to 15 years or more with the proper maintenance.
Furnaces also need regular assessment to make sure they heat the house quickly enough, have the proper flame sensor quality, and that all the gas lines and exhaust flues are functioning properly. The furnace also has to put out enough heat relative to the fuel it uses, and the safety shut-off must also be functional. The working parts for all of this include lots of metal pieces, hoses, and gaskets. With regular maintenance and timely filter replacements and cleaning, the parts will last much longer.
The cleaning of the furnace cabinet and the plenums is very important. Dust is a common issue, but mold and other debris can creep in unnoticed. The yearly cleaning and checkup will make sure that your home’s air stays safe and that the metal on your furnace doesn’t deteriorate more quickly than normal.
When to Call for Extra Maintenance
You may notice temperature issues, slower heating, or odd noises if a situation is developing with your furnace. If there is a decline in air quality or your house doesn’t heat like it normally does, don’t hesitate to call for maintenance.
It is always easier to nip a problem in the bud than to deal with a larger problem later! Keep in mind that you may also be looking at a parts order or fuel issue from time to time. Calling a technician early will help you catch problems in their initial stages, which usually means a less expensive repair.
HB Home Service Team provides maintenance for furnaces and all other types of heating systems. We also offer cooling maintenance and heating and cooling repairs and installation. In addition, we provide various plumbing services, electrical work, indoor air quality solutions, and oil and propane delivery. Contact the HB Home Service Team office in Harrisburg, PA, or Randallstown, MD, today to set up an appointment.