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First Choice Heating & Cooling Blog

Keeping Your Furnace Effective in Late Winter

furnace-repair-technicianWe still have plenty of winter left to go, and the farther into the season we move, the more danger the heating system in our homes will be at suffering from a drop in heating effectiveness. To keep your Howell, MI furnace operating at its peak levels—and with lowest chance of suffering a malfunction or breakdown—there are a number of steps you can take. We won’t get into arranging for regular maintenance, which is something to have done in the fall. (If you did forget to have maintenance in the fall, don’t worry—it’s not too late to call us now and have it done.)

Below are three things you can do that will protect your furnace from overwork and a loss of heating power during the remained of winter.

ONE: Keep all rooms vents open and unblocked

During the winter, some vents in rooms around the house can become blocked by moved carpets and furniture, or have their shutters closed. This is bad for the furnace: it increases the pressure inside the ventilation system, which can lead to leaks, and forces more work from the furnace blower, which drains energy and can cause the blower motor to overheat. Tour your house and make sure the vents are clear and open.

TWO: Lower the thermostat setting

Removing as much stress from the furnace as possible is a key way to help it make it through the winter. And the key place where you reduce the work the furnace is doing is with the thermostat. You don’t have to turn the thermostat down to the lowest levels where you’ll shiver all day. Instead, aim to have the thermostat set at 68°F, which most people will find comfortable with warm clothing on. If this is still too cold, we recommend setting the thermostat a few degrees higher, then lower it by a single degree each day until people adjust to 68°F. (In the evening, lower the setting by 8°F.)

THREE: Regularly change the furnace filter

The furnace filter isn’t designed to clean out the air to make it healthier (although it does help with that somewhat). Its job is to protect the interior of the furnace from damage due to dust and dirt, all of which can cause trouble: choking the burners, putting friction on the motors, etc. The filter, however, won’t clean itself. You need to change it for a new one every 1 to 3 months. Otherwise, the restriction on the airflow will overwork the furnace and harm comfort levels. Even worse, the filter will start to distort and allow debris to slip around it and into the furnace, where it can do damage. Keep up with a regular schedule of filter changes and the furnace will reward you with better performance.

If you need assistance with your furnace, such as repairs when it’s clear something simple isn’t causing the problem, call our team. We’ve been in business since 2001 keeping homes warm.

First Choice Heating & Cooling serves Fenton, Linden, Holly, and the Surrounding Areas. If your home had a voice, it would call First Choice!

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