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Expert Tips for Maintaining Your Furnace This Winter

changing furnace air filter

During winter, your furnace is one of the most critical components in your home. When properly maintained, it will deliver maximum heat, keeping you toasty warm on the most frigid nights. Here are a few tips for keeping your furnace in top shape over the winter.

  1. Change the air filter Before the first snowfall, change your furnace’s air filter. A dirty or clogged filter can significantly reduce your unit’s efficiency, forcing it to work harder to get air moving. This can lead to premature wear and tear and unexpected breakdowns.

  2. Inspect the blower motor Your furnace’s blower motor is responsible for circulating warm air into your home’s vents. Therefore, it’s crucial that this component be clean and working properly. Turn off your furnace, remove the cover from the blower compartment and inspect the blower motor for damage. Make sure the fan spins freely and isn’t hindered by dust or debris. You may need to lubricate the bearings.

  3. Reprogram the thermostat Change the batteries in your thermostat and adjust your heating schedule for winter. For example, a good rule of thumb is to program your thermostat to 17 C when you’re sleeping or not at home and 20 C when you’re at home. Lowering your home’s temperature by two to three degrees Celsius is optimal for saving energy and keeping your home comfortable.

  4. Clean around the furnace Furnaces are often located in basements and crawl spaces that double as storage rooms. Therefore, ensure there aren’t any boxes or large items blocking airflow to your furnace, especially anything flammable. Most manufacturer specifications and city codes stipulate that there shouldn’t be any clutter within at least 76 centimetres of your furnace.

  5. Schedule a professional furnace tune-up Contact an HVAC technician to thoroughly inspect your furnace. They’ll be able to identify and repair any minor issues to ensure your system works flawlessly all winter long.

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