Why Do You Need A Furnace Tune- Up?

February 16, 2015

Updated 2/27/19 
 
A scheduled check-up for your furnace is probably at the bottom of your to-do list. However, as we approach the colder months, now is the ideal time to make sure your furnace is ready to provide you maximum comfort throughout the season.

Among the leading ways to reduce furnace breakdowns and make sure it runs efficiently is with yearly scheduled tune-ups on your furnace. Just like all mechanical equipment, the life of a furnace will be enhanced with preventive maintenance, by ensuring that all the elements of the unit are running efficiently. Also, regular cleanings can help pinpoint going concerns before they become big problems and you end up paying emergency rates on a cold winter night. Plus, because furnaces burn fuel to provide the heat, it’s important to take a look at all the various components to ensure there aren’t any cracks or leaks that could impact the safety of your home. Taking the time to schedule a tune-up, even if it looks like it’s working just fine, will save you time, stress, and money throughout the heating season.

Is it true my warranty is voided if I don’t get tune ups?


Most manufacturers’ warranties require annual equipment maintenance to remain valid, so missing your tune-ups can actually result in losing your heating system warranty, which can be major money if your equipment does ever malfunction in the middle of extreme temperatures. Always get all you can from your warranty by ensuring it’s valid as long as possible with annual furnace system tune-ups from Eveready Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.
  
Furnace burners

What can I do to troubleshoot my furnace before calling a tech?


Here are a couple troubleshooting tips we suggest checking out early on in the heating season:

1. Inspect your home’s air filter

Air filters can easily be written off, but their importance to your home’s furnace efficiency cannot be overstated. Dirty air filters can lead to a host of comfort problems for homeowners, including:
  • operating
  • Restricted airflow
  • Decreased efficiency
  • Higher energy bills
If you take out your home’s air filter, hold it up to a light. If you can’t see light coming through it, it’s more than likely been a while since your last heating service, and likely time to replace it. If it’s a simple disposable air filter, just replace it with a like-size new one. It’s also a good idea to write down the date you installed the new filter, so you know how old it is next time it needs to be swapped out. Refer to the filter packaging to see how long the new air filter is supposed to be used.

2. Double check your thermostat.
  • One of the most basic tasks that homeowners can do is check the thermostat.
  • Ensure it is set to Heat and not Cool, and that the temperature setting is higher than the current indoor temperature.
  • If you can’t remember the last time you swapped out your thermostat’s battery, now is the ideal time to do so.
  • When first going over to your heat setting, turn your thermostat up a few extra degrees to make sure that it is operating correctly and heating your home’s air.
3. Open up your air vents.

There’s a common misconception that you can save money by shutting the vents (supply registers) in rooms that aren’t being occupied. Resist the urge to close too many, as doing so can actually increase the pressure in your furnace, making it work harder to heat your home. This can cause failed blower motors, mold or mildew in your ducts, damage to the compressor, a ruptured heat exchanger, and other problems. What Does a Furnace Tune-Up Include?
  • Full inspection. The service should include a full visual and point examination to check all the working parts of your furnace and duct system. This is the best method for the technician to notify you of any components that are beginning to show signs of wear.
  • Lubrication. Mechanical equipment needs lubrication to reduce friction between the functioning parts. Your equipment tune-up should include a complete lubrication.
  • Pilot and gas pressure regulating. As part of your tune-up, changes may be made to the pilot and gas pressure as needed to restore these elements to manufacturer specifications.
  • Filter replacement. A comprehensive furnace tune-up should include a normal 1” filter replacement with your service. Many furnace filters need to be replaced at least every 90 days, which can boost efficiency and prevent operational complications.
  • Written assessment. Quality HVAC companies will also give you their analysis in writing or on the receipt with your tune-up, including their professional maintenance suggestions for the coming year. This important information can help you establish the current condition of your furnace and outline ways to lower your energy bills.

4. Is the Furnace Getting Electricity?

Switch the thermostat to “on” from “auto” to force the fan to operate. If the fan does come on, power is working right, but if it doesn’t, your furnace may not be getting power.

5. Is the Furnace Switch Functioning Properly?


All furnaces have a power switch (similar to a light switch) either on the furnace or on a nearby wall. Flip the switch and wait a couple of minutes to see if it turns the furnace on. Also check to see if all access panels and doors on the furnace are completely closed.

6. Condensate Drainage


High-efficiency furnaces can drain off several gallons of water every day. If the drain lines are clogged with dirt and debris, the furnace will shut down.

7. Examine Vents for Blockage


If you have a furnace that vents out the side of the house, check to see if anything could be blocking the intake or exhaust. Be sure the area doesn’t have leaves, animal nests, or snow/ice.


What Should You Expect After a Furnace Tune-Up?


Improved Function

Your heating and air conditioning system naturally loses energy efficiency over time. This loss of efficiency is due to many factors, including dust and dirt, natural wear and tear, and buildup in drains or on burners. Keeping your heating system maintained with routine professional tune-ups can help to reduce these factors. During your tune-up, your maintenance technician will clean and check over your furnace, identifying areas of concern. They can identify failing parts in need of replacement before they become a larger problem. A tune-up alone may instantly improve energy efficiency by up to 30%. You’ll also enjoy cleaner air and a cleaner house because your HVAC unit will be distributing clean air through a clean air filter. Perhaps one of the largest benefits you’ll enjoy following a fall furnace or AC tune-up is lower utility bills. A poorly-maintained HVAC system must work much harder to heat and cool your home, while a furnace or air conditioner that has been expertly tuned can take less energy to provide exceptional indoor comfort. Because your heating system will function more efficiently, it will deliver superior heating at lower cost than you otherwise may have had during the coldest months of the year.

A Longer-Lasting HVAC System

Your HVAC system is an important appliance with a limited lifetime. Depending on use, with proper maintenance you can expect your furnace and air conditioner to run between 8-18 years before you will need to consider replacement. However, poor maintenance is one of the top reasons for early replacement HVAC systems ahead of end of average life expectancy.

If you’re wondering how much a furnace tune up costs, you can relax knowing it’s not going to cost a limb. Sometimes we have special offers in your local area that you can run wild with.

It’s preferable to take action now and be prepared than to regret it during the first visit Jack Frost makes this year when your furnace takes a dive. If you would like to learn more about what a furnace tune-up includes, or how it benefits you—give our experts a call at 866-397-3787 or schedule an appointment online.

 

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