As homeowners we often take it for granted that our primary systems – plumbing, heating, electrical – are just always going to work.
That faith in technology is the reason we feel comfortable flipping the thermostat from air conditioning to heating without bringing in a professional HVAC company to do a seasonal check on our equipment.
Given the importance of your furnace to heat your home during a Canadian winter, it’s a good idea to reach out to companies like Henderson Metal before making the seasonal switch.
“We like to suggest that people have their furnaces checked annually to make sure everything is working appropriately,” said Kerri Fryia, General Manager of the Sault Ste. Marie company. “It’s simple preventative maintenance that can help you avoid problems later in the season.”
According to Fryia, there are other very simple proactive measures homeowners can take to ensure their furnace is running at maximum efficiency prior to winter’s arrival.
One of the most important preventative maintenance tips is checking the condition of your furnace air filter.
“Sometimes people who aren’t familiar with the equipment don’t realize that there are filters that require changing in their furnace,” she said.
“If someone’s air filter is extremely dirty it can cause the furnace to shut down. And if you have pets there’s fur and dander that can be pulled into your furnace. You need to check it every month and change it if necessary.”
Another potential area of concern is your battery-operated thermostat.
If the batteries in the thermostat are dead your furnace will not run. Many people mistakenly think that it’s a problem with the furnace. Before calling an HVAC company to check your furnace Fryia suggests checking the thermostat.
A good rule of thumb to consider is to change the batteries in your thermostat at the same time you change the batteries in your smoke alarms each year.
In areas that receive heavy snowfall, Fryia also suggests that homeowners check to ensure the furnace exhaust found outside of the home is free and clear from snow accumulations. If the ventilation is blocked it can also cause the furnace to shut down.
Unless you have a new furnace installed, booking a seasonal maintenance check up is a good way to avoid unexpected and costly emergency service. With winter approaching and temperatures dropping, Fryia says the demand for seasonal maintenance is on the rise.
“People usually start booking early in the fall but this September people were still running with air conditioning. Now it’s important to book as far in advance as possible. We try to accommodate everyone as best as we can, but when it gets busy people will have to be patient. As long as you keep your filter clean you may not need a cleaning every year.”