Everyone knows that a tune-up is a good thing, a bit of preventative maintenance designed to keep the most important parts of your everyday life running smoothly and reliably in your home, your car, and many other machines that you interact with during your daily routine. This is especially true for certain hands-off parts of your home that work hard year-round to keep you comfortable.
Your furnace is one of those components that benefit from an annual tune-up in more ways than one. A furnace tune-up keeps your home heating system running as smoothly as possible, year in and year out, but the process also has a wide range of extra benefits that serve to sweeten the deal. When you invest in annual maintenance for your furnace, you may be surprised to find you’ll encounter a wide range of benefits, such as:
Lower Energy Costs
Over time, dust and debris build up on filters and in other parts of your furnace and drastically reduce its efficiency, as well as the appearance of cracks and other imperfections throughout your home heating system. Because it’s estimated that your furnace’s operations could make up as much as 50 percent of your energy bill during the winter months, even with a smoothly-running system, any reduction in efficiency is a huge blight on your budget.
This is precisely why keeping your furnace in top shape is a must for those concerned about their monthly energy expenses and environmental footprint. Making just a few key changes during a yearly tune-up could, in fact, save you hundreds of dollars throughout the year.
Every furnace has an efficiency rating assigned to it by the Department of Energy. This rating changes depending on the type and age of the furnace you’re using. In general, the stats for the three main categories appear as such:
- Old/low-end furnaces: 56 – 70 percent
- Medium-end furnaces: 80 – 83 percent
- High-end furnaces: 90 – 98.5 percent
Each of these figures measures how much of the fuel used by the furnace is actually transformed into heat in your home throughout the process. For example, an old or low-end furnace that’s running at the top of its game is likely to operate at 70 percent efficiency, which means that 70 percent of the fuel you’re paying for is actually used to heat your home.
The remaining 30 percent is lost throughout the process. The better the furnace, the higher your efficiency, meaning you waste less money on fuel over the months.
Performing regular tune-ups is crucial to keeping this efficiency rating as high as possible. Even with the latest and greatest in high-end furnace technology, dirty filters, and unkempt systems can reduce overall system efficiency by nearly 10 percent, meaning you’re throwing away your hard-earned cash on fuel you’ll never feel the benefits of. Performing regular tune-ups is inexpensive and prevents this from becoming an issue.
Enhance Home Comfort
Winters can get harsh, and when the temperatures drop and the wind, snow, and sleet come rolling in, you need to know that you can rely on your furnace to keep you and your family warm on even the chilliest night.
Investing in a bit of annual furnace maintenance by the professionals ensures that this is always the case, and you’re unlikely to be caught off-guard by heating failures on the nights when you need your furnace the most. Keep in mind that it’s beneficial to perform your tune-up with plenty of time to spare before that cold weather comes knocking, though.
It’s always a great idea to perform your tune-up early in order to catch potentially unsolvable problems early on to ensure your furnace is up and running by the time these freezing temps roll around, giving you plenty of time to deal with any necessary repairs you might uncover during your maintenance project.
If you do happen to uncover problems that can’t be fixed by simple repairs or maintenance, it’s always possible to invest in a new installation if you catch the problem early enough. This not only gives you the opportunity to upgrade your heating experience to something more effective and efficient but also ensures that, from floor to ceiling, your home and everyone in it will remain warm and cozy throughout the entire season.
While a new furnace might not be an investment you want to make during the holiday season, remember that it’s a necessary step and a new, modern furnace will last you well over a decade, especially if you aim for a quality system and professional installation.
Keep Your Warranty
Letting your furnace fall apart and become a victim of neglect is one of the fastest, most surefire ways to lose your manufacturer’s warranty. Most warranties you purchase along with a furnace come with stipulations that the warranty is voided if the furnace in question isn’t properly cared for and is treated with neglect that causes damage to the system. In fact, if you ever do need to call on your warranty to get a full furnace replacement, your providers will most likely ask for service records to prove that you have, in fact, been investing in the necessary work to keep your furnace in good shape.
This is where getting your annual furnace tune-up comes in. Preserving your receipts and service records gives you ample proof to show your furnace’s manufacturer that, yes, you have been taking proper care of your furnace and that the difficulties you’re experiencing are not born of neglect. This can help you save thousands of dollars in some cases and is a benefit that should never be overlooked.
Dangerous Gas Detection
Yet another benefit that comes with proper annual heater maintenance is the more accurate detection of dangerous gas and carbon monoxide leaks from the system itself. Your furnace burns fuel in order to create the heat you feel throughout your home.
This is done so in a closed system that, when working properly, keeps the gas itself from ever reaching the interior of your home. However, cracks and damage that develop in and around your system over time can expose this closed system and allow dangerous gasses to leak into your home, where they can lead to illness or even death if left undetected for too long.
Trying to detect these problems on your own can be quite difficult because the gasses associated with furnace operations are often odorless and colorless, leaving behind nothing but the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, including:
- Blurred vision
- Difficulty breathing
Allowing a professional who knows the signs to look for to handle your annual maintenance ensures you’re safe from leaks like these. Trained eyes are able to catch potential leaks and gas-related threats before they become an issue, while professional know-how gets parts replaced or patched as soon as possible.
Get a Professional Assessment
While changing your filters and cleaning your furnace room are tasks you can certainly handle yourself, there are other, more intricate parts of the regular furnace tune-up that are best left to the professionals.
Ensure you always get a job well-done and that your furnace is safe, efficient, and ready for the coldest night by contacting Howard Air for an assessment and tune-up as soon as possible. Schedule a full tune-up for the fall and winter months to keep your home and everyone inside it toasty all season long.
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