You depend on your furnace to keep your Greenville, NC, home comfortable during the winter. Too commonly, this integral part of your home suffers from neglect, causing it to fail prematurely. Here are seven ways to add years to your furnace’s lifespan:
Check Your Air Filter Regularly
Your furnace depends on sufficient airflow to both heat your home and reduce operational strain. A neglected air filter is the most common problem, creating an airflow restriction.
For the standard 1-inch filter and average air quality, you should plan to replace it about every 90 days. Consider checking it monthly and vacuuming the intake side to help improve airflow for the filter’s entire life.
Use the Right Fan Setting
Most thermostats offer two different fan settings: Auto and On. When you switch the setting to On, the circulating fan runs constantly, even when the furnace is off. While this may help move air around your home, it adds considerable wear to the circulating fan motor.
Rather, use the Auto setting, which turns the fan on while the furnace cycles. If you need more circulation, consider using ceiling or pedestal fans.
Run Your Ceiling Fans
Your ceiling fan should have two directions it can spin, one for summer and one for winter. Over the winter months, the blades should spin counterclockwise, drawing air up rather than pushing it down.
Drawing air in this way gently pushes warm air back down into the living space. You’ll be as comfortable without setting your thermostat as high, being the heat won’t be settling at your ceiling.
Upgrade Your Thermostat
Your thermostat is truly the brain of your HVAC system, controlling when it cycles on and off. If yours is more than 10 to 15 years old, chances are it’s not reading the temperature in your home correctly. This leads to unusual cycle lengths and reduced efficiency, driving up your utility and repair costs.
Consider upgrading your thermostat to at least a programmable model, if not a smart learning one. According to the Department of Energy, adjusting your thermostat settings during unneeded times can save you up to 10%.
The easiest way to do this is using the thermostat’s programs so that you don’t have to remember. A smart model with remote access allows you to easily adjust the settings if your schedule suddenly changes.
Check Your Insulation
Almost everyone knows your home’s biggest energy loss is not your windows but your roof. If your attic has insufficient insulation, you’ll lose even more heat. Work with an experienced HVAC professional to check your house for thermal leaks to see if your insulation is effective.
Fix Small Problems Early
Small problems often go unnoticed if you’re not paying attention to them, but their impacts multiply quickly. When any one component operates sub-optimally, the entire furnace experiences strain. This strain comes mainly from the system running longer cycles, short cycling or generating more heat than it should.
To avoid this, keep an eye open for subtle signs there are problems. These include low airflow, lack of heating power and odd sounds or smells. If you notice any of these, call to schedule your furnace repairs before the problems grow.
Get the Recommended Maintenance
Every manufacturer makes recommendations for routine maintenance, oftentimes including it as a term of their warranty. In addition to keeping the warranty valid, the maintenance protocol also keeps the system running efficiently, keeping operational strain down.
The recommendation for furnaces is maintenance every fall before the cold weather settles in and you depend on its function. This also allows you time to address minor problems your service technician uncovers to reduce the risk of mid-season breakdowns.
Our expert service technicians provide heating and cooling installation, maintenance and repair, along with indoor air quality solutions. Call to schedule your fall furnace maintenance with one of our expert service technicians today at J & J Mechanical, Inc.
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