As we roll through September in Rochester, many predictable things are happening- The nights are cold, the days are hot, people still can’t drive… You get it. As I write this we are enjoying a beautiful day in the ’80s, and there hasn’t been a mention of snow in 5 months, so your home heating system is probably the furthest thing from your mind. Well, take it from us, now is the perfect time to perform routine, seasonal furnace maintenance. While it may seem like these beautiful fall days are here for a while, a look at the long-term weather forecast for Rochester tells us that October will be a different animal altogether.
The second most popular fall game (right behind any Bills game) is the game many play to wait as long as they can before turning the heat on. Many experts recommend turning on your heat when the indoor temperature reaches 64 degrees but that seems a little meek, right? In any case, when you finally do turn on your heat, chances are that you’ve done so because you are freezing, and the last thing you want is for that deferred furnace maintenance to come back and bite you. So, what’s the alternative? Make sure that your furnace and heating system are functioning properly before you need them. We’ll give you a couple of things to look for below.
Many new homeowners as well as people who are not comfortable with performing maintenance or repairs will reach out to a local home heating specialist, make an appointment, and enjoy a comfortable home through the winter. While this is a great way to have peace of mind, others prefer to do routine maintenance by themselves. Either is great, just make sure that someone checks the system out before you expect it to heat your family for the long winter that is coming.
Regardless of your level of expertise with all things mechanical, there are some simple things that you can do to make sure your home is comfortable until the spring.
● Change all filters- Heating and air conditioning filters should be changed at least every 3 months. Many allergy sufferers find that changing them more often (usually every month) alleviates some of their more frequent symptoms. Pro Tip: Don’t be caught short on filters, buy them in bulk
● Keep heating vents and ducts free and clear- Similar to 390 in the winter, the most efficient way for heat to get from your furnace to your living room is by keeping the passages clean. Whether using a brush, a vacuum, or other HVAC-approved tools, make sure that the heating highway is unobstructed! Another potential issue is that if your vents and ducts are dusty, or otherwise cluttered is that those items will be heated before that heat has a chance to get to the living areas of your home.
● Clean the chimney- Whether you have a fireplace or not, if you have a chimney it needs to be cleaned. You will be amazed at the things that find their way into the chimney, and many of these obstructions can pose a fire, smoke, or other airborne hazards. Make sure you give it a good sweep.
● BONUS- Perform end-of-year A/C maintenance so that your home is comfortable year-round!
Performing routine and seasonal maintenance on your home heating and air conditioning units may seem like just a lot of busy work, it can actually save you money on your utility bills by making these systems more efficient. If you get stuck or would like some more information or assistance, feel free to reach out and ask about our home comfort consultation.
No one likes saying goodbye to the warm weather of summer and fall, but all good things come to an end. I assure you that you will dislike it considerably more if you finally turn your heat on and it doesn’t work. With these simple maintenance tips, you will know where you stand before you need the heat, and we are happy to help!