When preparing for the winter weather there are some things you should check to ensure the furnace is set for success all winter long. The following is a basic checklist to make sure all things are a go!
- Change the Air Filters. You probably have air filters behind a vent grill in the wall or ceiling or a single filter in the HVAC system itself. Make sure to change these filters every few months. Cleaning or replacing your filters regularly keeps particles out of your HVAC system and can prolong its life. While you’re at it, change your humidifier filter and set the humidistat, if your HVAC includes a humidifier. Schedule a furnace checkup with one of our heating & cooling experts, and stay warm all winter.
- Cover the AC Condenser. Unless your HVAC is a heat pump (in which case, don’t cover it at all because it runs all year), cover the condenser to protect it from falling icicles. A large trash can lid secured with bungee cords or a board to cover the fan works well. This will protect it all winter long.
- Heat Exchanger Cleanse. The heat exchanger should be brushed and vacuumed out annually by a trained professional while the unit is disabled. While being cleaned, the technician will look for cracks, which could lead to a dangerous carbon monoxide leak into your home.
- Lubricate and Clean the Blower Motor. First, check the owner’s manual to see if your motor is the kind that needs lubricating. If it does, turn off the power, open the cover and clean the caps covering the bearings. Then remove the caps and lubricate the bearings.
- Replace Filter. If you have an oil-powered furnace, replace your filter and nozzle and check the tank level. Unlike gas-fired systems, oil units require oil filter changes, burner nozzle cleaning and a pretty thorough heat-exchanger brushing to keep them running efficiently since oil doesn’t burn as cleanly as gas.