Homeowners who commit to consistent furnace upkeep will enjoy, on average, five more years of healthy operation than they otherwise would without annual maintenance. Heavy furnace usage gradually wears your system down, but proper upkeep and care will offset much of that deterioration. So, if you keep your usage in check and take good care of the appliance, there’s no reason you can’t get 15+ efficient years from it. There are numerous steps you should take and habits that you can start to keep your heating system healthy.
Providing a Clean Environment
One thing that will worsen a furnace’s efficiency and shorten its lifespan is excessive dust. When this dust — and dirt and other debris — cycles into the heating system, it hampers the ability of your furnace to operate smoothly. When this occurs, you’ll notice negative effects on your monthly bills, home comfort, and furnace health. The cleaner you can keep your home of these contaminants, the longer your furnace will last.
Your household’s air ducts and vents should be a priority for regular cleaning. These are the pathways that your furnace uses to circulate heat, but they become packed with dust and debris over time. If neglected for too long, those particles will accumulate to the point of congesting the airways, forcing your furnace to work harder to keep you comfortable. You can clean your vents by simply removing the cover panels with a screwdriver and vacuuming the interior. If you want a closer examination of your ductwork, consider hiring a local professional to clean and inspect them every year or two.
Cleaning the various surfaces around your house will also make things easier on your furnace. Once a month, wipe down all flat surfaces with a damp rag and take your rugs and pillows outside to shake them out and bat them together. Remember, any contaminants you remove from your home are contaminants that can’t clog up your heating system.
Scheduling Regular Tune-Ups
In addition to increasing its lifespan, regularly scheduled furnace maintenance will also ensure that you’re getting the best possible results from your appliance. During a tune-up, your hired technician will give the furnace a deep clean and make adjustments to improve its performance. As a result, the system will be able to effectively heat your home without taking on as much wear, therefore, improving your comfort and extending the unit’s lifespan. Additionally, the improved efficiency will significantly lower your monthly heating bills.
With regular maintenance, major malfunctions and breakdowns will also be less likely for your furnace, and you’ll have a chance to catch potential issues early on during the inspections. Every time your heating system needs a repair, it loses a bit of its expected lifespan, but identifying the red flags early usually reduces the severity. Ultimately, furnace tune-ups are investments that pay dividends in numerous ways:
- More effective heating
- Lower energy usage
- Better indoor air quality
- Longer furnace lifespan
- Fewer repairs needed
In the San Antonio, TX area, our technicians at Beyer Air Conditioning & Heating are always available to handle your furnace tune-ups and inspections. Ideally, you should schedule a maintenance visit every year, and the most effective time is early winter or late fall.
Monitoring the Air Filter
Your HVAC system is equipped with an air filter, which plays a crucial role in keeping your furnace clean and healthy. This filter catches most of the dirt, dust, and debris that’s floating around every household. This duty keeps the system operating efficiently, but when you don’t regularly clean or replace the filter, it will eventually become too packed with contaminants to do its job. That will result in the furnace struggling to circulate air, putting extra stress on the appliance.
You don’t necessarily have to replace the air filter every month, but you should at least monitor it and clean it regularly. If you’re ever unsure whether it’s clean enough, take the safe route and switch it out for a new one. Ultimately, the cost of a few new filters is much lower than that of a new furnace.
Give the Furnace Regular Breathers
Even if you take amazing care of your furnace, relying on it too heavily is going to shorten its life expectancy. If you can find a balance in which you only crank the thermostat up when there’s no alternative, that will yield the best results. Think about it like putting mileage on your car. Like a vehicle, a furnace can only give you so many miles before wearing out, so you don’t want to use them up too recklessly.
There are numerous ways you can give your furnace rest, and one good option is utilizing your curtains. When closed, curtains can trap quite a bit of heat in your home. So, instead of turning up the heater, try closing all your curtains in the evening. However, when it’s sunny outside, you can keep them open to let the natural warmth spill in.
If your home has ceiling fans, you can also warm the place up by running them counter-clockwise. That will encourage better circulation throughout the house, especially on the upper floors. Finally, perhaps the easiest way to give your furnace rest is to dress more warmly when you’re home, even if it’s only for one day each week. Every time you can find an alternative way to stay warm, you conserve a few of your furnace’s miles and save money on energy.
Using a Programmable Thermostat
Everyone has forgotten to turn the thermostat off when leaving for work or going to sleep. These are easy mistakes to make, but they add up to shorten your heating system’s lifespan. With a programmable thermostat, you won’t have to worry about your furnace running when you are not a home because you can set the thermostat to automatically turn off the heater when you know you won’t need it. Additionally, most units can detect the home’s temperature and only call on the furnace when necessary. These thermostats usually don’t cost more than two hundred dollars, but they’ll save you much more than that in heating bills and improved furnace health.
Reliable Heating Professionals
Since 1990, we at Beyer Air Conditioning & Heating have provided the San Antonio area with expert heating and cooling services. The number one priority for our family-owned and operated business is to provide excellent customer service. We view our clients as part of our family, and we offer our clients certain guarantees: fair treatment, committed service, straight talk, and a focus on quality. Heating and cooling are our specialties, but our team also offers indoor air quality services, new construction, and duct cleaning and repair. Whether you’re located near the San Antonio Riverwalk or by the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, we’re ready and willing to provide you with high-quality service.
Give us a call at Beyer Air Conditioning & Heating today to learn more about our services or schedule an appointment.