The first day of fall is a sign that cold weather is just around the corner. Even if you aren’t excited for the winter, there’s a lot to love about this snowy season. Soon enough, you can enjoy a cup of steaming hot chocolate beside a cozy fireplace. And if you don’t have a fireplace, no problem—your furnace will do the trick instead.
But before you turn on your furnace, you should assess its overall condition. Doing so will ensure that it operates safely and effectively. Here’s what you should know:
Take a Look at the Thermostat
For the last few months, you’ve kept your air conditioner running to fend off the summer heat. But now that the weather outdoors is changing, it’s time to inspect the thermostat and see what needs to be adjusted. Make sure to switch the thermostat from “COOL” to “HEAT” when it starts to get colder outside.
If you have a smart thermostat, you can set your home to automatically cool down when you’re out of the house or asleep. This will give your furnace a break when you don’t need it as much.
Test the Carbon Monoxide Alarm
Before you switch on your gas furnace, it’s important to ensure that your CO detector is in working order. During the months it sat idle, the batteries may have run out of juice.
We advise regularly testing your CO detector to make sure it’s functioning properly. You rely on this alarm to find out if your gas furnace is leaking. Carbon monoxide has no distinct odour and can be deadly. The symptoms of CO poisoning can be difficult to detect—they include dizziness, nausea, and confusion.
Upgrade the Filter
Your furnace can’t operate effectively if the airflow is blocked by dust, hair, or other particles. If you notice that your home is dusty in the winters, consider upgrading the MERV rating of your furnace filter. Given that you’ll be spending a lot more time indoors, it’ll be worth the additional cost.
However, a filter that’s too restrictive might impede the airflow of the unit. Check the manufacturer’s label to see which filters are compatible with your furnace.
Your heating bill will be through the roof if warm air escapes through holes or gaps in your home. On a cold day, try to notice any drafts in your home. Drafts are often near the doors, windows, and walls in your home. Sealing drafts is cost effective; it lessens the burden on your furnace and saves you on electricity or natural gas costs.
Visually Inspect it
Has your furnace suffered any damage during the summer months? Brush off the layer of dust that’s probably formed on the surface of the unit. Then, make sure there are no dents or other visible signs of damage. If you see anything concerning, schedule furnace maintenance with your local HVAC technician.
Now that the warmer months are behind us, it’s time to start thinking about the condition of your heating system. Do you notice a strange smell when you turn on your furnace? Are there odd noises coming from the unit? Does your home feel like an icebox, even when you turn up the thermostat?
If you’ve answered “yes” to any of these questions, then it’s time to schedule HVAC maintenance and repairs. Contact Provincial Heating and Cooling today. Our heating contractors in Winnipeg will help prepare your furnace for the winter ahead!