When it comes to taking care of your furnace, routine maintenance is key. Just think about it this way: you wouldn’t run your car without changing the oil on it regularly. Servicing your vehicle on a regular basis is absolutely critical when it comes to getting the best performance out of it. The same is true for furnaces. A furnace that hasn’t been serviced in years is like running your car without an oil change for a year. In both cases, you’ll need to have an expert look at it as soon as possible because the fact that either of these still works is somewhat of a miracle.
Furnace Maintenance and Manufacturers’ Warranties
Not only are tune-ups great for getting the best performance and longest life span out of your heating equipment, but regular furnace maintenance is usually required to keep manufacturers’ warranties active. Warranties are a way for manufacturers to give their consumers peace of mind with a written agreement that promises to replace certain items should they malfunction within a specified period. If items fail within that period, then manufacturers may offer replacement parts or repairs at no cost to the consumer. Not all warranties offer the same promises, so you’ll need to read your warranties closely.
One element often found in heating and cooling equipment warranties, however, is that proper and regular maintenance is needed in order to keep products under warranty. If you do not have records of regular maintenance, then the manufacturer can choose not to honor the warranty, since you failed to honor the guidelines for proper maintenance on the warranty as well.
Needless to say, having your furnace or heating equipment regularly and properly serviced by a certified contractor is a smart investment. If you aren’t quite sure what a typical furnace service includes, take a look at the checklist below.
Routine Furnace Maintenance Checklist
- Inspect and clean blower assembly and blower motor
- Inspect heat exchanger and identify any possible cracks
- Clean heat exchanger
- Examine burners and igniter
- Remove dirt and dust from gas burners
- Inspect blower’s amperage
- Test for proper temperature rise
- Check operating pressures and proper venting
- Inspect flue and check for obstructions and buildup
- Test for carbon monoxide and gas leaks
- Verify wiring is safe and not worn
- Verify thermostat settings and calibrate
- Clean or replace air filter
Frequency of Furnace Tune-Ups
How often you maintain your furnace or other heating equipment really depends on how much you use it. Look at it this way. Let’s say you own two cars. One car you use as your daily driver. You drive 50 miles to work and 50 miles back five to six times per week. The other is your sports car you reserve for the weekends. It’s safe to say that your commuter car will require more frequent tune-ups than your weekend convertible. Likewise, the frequency of your furnace maintenance depends on how much you use it. At the bare minimum, however, you should have your furnace serviced at least once a year right before the winter weather gets here. This will get your furnace ready for the upcoming season.
For help finding a qualified furnace maintenance contractor, give us a call at 866-97-ACPRO, or search our contractor listings.