Your furnace has been sitting idle all summer and now, it’s time to kick it on. Furnace winter preparation goes beyond simply clicking your thermostat on and waiting for the heat to start. You need to make sure your furnace activates without compromising efficiency and indoor air quality. Here are the steps to take to prepare your furnace for winter nights in Visalia, CA.
- Change your air filter: After sitting all summer, your air filter is likely dirty. It’s a good idea to change your filter every two or three months and perhaps more often if you have pets. This helps efficiency, since heat flow reduces when the filter is clogged or filthy. Also, a clean filter keeps dust and particles out of the air so your indoor air quality remains clean.
- Clean vents: Another step towards efficiency and air quality is clean vents. You may notice when your furnace first activates, there’s the smell of burning dust. That’s due to summer inaction and dirt accumulation. You can avoid the smell by cleaning vents first, then setting the heat.
- Set thermostat correctly: Set the thermostat by switching it from “cool” to “heat.” It’s simple, yet most people adjust the temperature without remembering to flip the switch over to heat! If you’ve adjusted the thermostat and the heater isn’t turning on, check the thermostat again. You’re likely to save yourself an embarrassing call to an HVAC technician in Visalia, CA.
- Check for leaks: Cracked windows, drafty corners and doors with worn weatherization seals are already sources for unwanted cold air. Start sealing and caulking these areas to reduce drafts and enjoy a more comfortable home. Plus, this will save you money on fall and winter heating bills.
- Activate carbon monoxide alarms: If your home runs on gas heat, it should have carbon monoxide alarms. These need to be armed and ready in case your home has a gas leak. If the alarms run on batteries, change the batteries to new ones. For plugged-in models, test them to ensure function in case of emergency. Many alarm systems also include carbon monoxide detection, so if you haven’t activated that service yet, now’s a good time to do it.
- Be observant: If your furnace makes a noise or produces a new smell, don’t ignore it. Furnaces are carbon monoxide and fire risks, and these may be early signs of something disastrous. Call an HVAC technician to take a look and see if there’s anything requiring repair. At the very least, you can also get maintenance done to ensure your furnace remains reliable all through winter.
- Schedule maintenance: Even if your furnace is operating properly, schedule a maintenance appointment. This can be necessary if you cannot access filters or you simply prefer to avoid an emergency appointment later. Saving yourself this headache during the holidays and beyond is a good measure to take.
McGee Refrigeration offers residential HVAC services to prepare your furnace for winter. Contact us today if you require assistance with furnace winter preparation and we’ll make sure you get the best furnace startup services in Visalia, CA.