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Furnace Maintenance & Preparations for Winter

Furnace Maintenance & Preparations for Winter

Is your furnace prepared for the winter months?

We all know that the cold months in Texas usually seem to come and go pretty quickly.

But surely, after the crazy and unexpected freeze of 2021, we are left with a better understanding of the importance of being prepared!

So, what does it mean to be prepared, and what should you do to ensure your family’s comfort this winter?

At Madd Air Heating & Cooling, we always recommend that homeowners have an annual servicing done on their furnace before turning it on the first time.

Although the Texas cold season may be short and sporadic, furnace preparations are still necessary, and you’ll want a professional helping to ensure your comfort throughout the winter.

Let’s discuss the essential aspects of furnace maintenance in preparation for cold weather.

Heating installation

Cleaning Your Furnace

Cleaning your furnace before the cold months of the year is essential for ensuring optimal efficiency and performance throughout the winter.

When you have your heating system professionally serviced before winter, your HVAC company will take care of this aspect for you. An experienced HVAC technician will know what to look for and how to ensure that you can rely on your heater as soon as the cold weather begins.

HVAC systems are complex machines that require regular care and maintenance for maximum efficiency. There are many different components within your heating system that will need to be cleaned and tested regularly in order to maintain peak performance.

DIY furnace maintenance attempts often result in broken parts and unnecessary repair costs to the homeowner.

That said, the best way to guarantee a job well done is to hire a professional HVAC technician to service your heater at least once or twice a year.

Changing Your Filters

If you have not already replaced your return air vent filters in the last month or two, go ahead and replace them now, and don’t forget to check your furnace unit for a filter, as well.

Some furnaces have their own filter that will need to be replaced and maintained. To do this, you may need to remove an access panel to get to your furnace’s filter, but otherwise, filter maintenance is a pretty simple task to do on your own.

Carbon Monoxide Testing For Your Furnace

When heating your home for the winter, safety is always the number one priority.

Because furnaces are often only used a few times a year in Texas, carbon monoxide leaks are a very real concern and must be ruled out prior to each operation for safe performance.

Carbon monoxide testing is one of the most significant reasons you want to have your furnace professionally serviced and tested annually prior to use.

When left unchecked, carbon monoxide leaks from your furnace have the potential to be fatal for you and your family. If you do not have a carbon monoxide sensor installed, now is an excellent time to have your HVAC technician install one for you.

Thermostat Testing

Your HVAC technician will always check your thermostat to see if it needs recalibration or replacement.

Thermostats should be checked regularly to ensure proper function and accuracy. If your thermostat is not working properly, you won’t reach your desired comfort level in your home easily, and your furnace’s performance becomes unreliable.

There are many aspects to your heating system that only a professional would know to check for when evaluating your furnace. This is why we recommend annual maintenance performed by an expert prior to each heating and cooling season.

However, at the very least, be sure to check your system and take care of simple maintenance like filter replacements on a regular basis.

If you’ve changed your filters and ensured that your thermostat is set correctly and are still experiencing problems with your heater, shut the system off and call a professional immediately for expert assistance.

Guarantee Your Comfort with Expert Furnace Maintenance

As you can see, maintaining your home’s heating system is a crucial part of guaranteeing your family’s comfort and safety throughout the winter.

Your furnace is an expensive machine that requires annual maintenance and regular care in order to maintain peak performance, energy efficiency, and safety while in use.

If you have any questions or concerns about your furnace/heating system, give Madd Air Heating & Cooling a call today at 281-354-9600.

Our team of HVAC professionals is more than happy to check your heating system, performance crucial maintenance, and guarantee your comfort!

Winter Heating Safety Tips

Heating Safety Tips

We’ve had another dip in temperatures, and more are sure to follow here in Houston. This means it’s time for the heat! Whether you use your central heating, fireplace, space heater, or a combination of these, there are important winter heating safety tips to follow.

Fireplace Heating Safety Tips

Whether you have a wood-burning fireplace or a gas fireplace, there are many things to keep in mind when lighting a fire this winter.

For all fireplaces (or even wood-burning stoves), remember these key tips:

  • Never leave a fire unattended. Even if you think you will only be gone a moment, never leave a fire unattended. It could easily end in disaster.
  • Have your chimney inspected (and cleaned, if necessary) every year.
  • Be sure the flue to your fireplace is open, allowing the smoke and fumes to escape through the chimney.
  • Never burn garbage in a fireplace or wood-burning stove.
  • Keep flammable materials clear of the fire. A distance of three feet is a good minimum for flammable materials away from a fire.
  • Watch children and pets carefully around any fire.

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For wood-burning fireplaces or stoves, remember to always used dry wood. Any wood that is wet will likely be very smoky if it will burn at all, and not all smoke will leave your home.

For gas fireplaces, there are also a few additional safety tips. Burning gas in your fireplace can work to deplete the oxygen in your home. Limit the use of gas fireplaces to and hour or two. Having sensors installed in your home for carbon monoxide can help you monitor the air in your home. If you would like to burn the fireplace for a longer period, consider cracking a window to replace the oxygen in the air.

Furnace Heating Safety Tips

We typically use electric or gas furnaces to heat our homes more regularly than other methods in this area of Texas. When a furnace is properly maintained, it can provide a safe, reliable way to heat your home. However, there are still heating safety tips to keep in mind when using your furnace.

  • Keep the area around your furnace clear. You may be storing those Christmas decorations in the attic, but give some clearance to the heater. You don’t want your favorite decorations to be what causes a spark and fire in your home!
  • Be sure you have proper ventilation for your furnace.
  • Perform annual maintenance on your unit.
  • Install and/or maintain carbon monoxide detectors in your home.
  • Test smoke alarms for proper functioning.
  • Change your furnace air filter when dirty to prevent overworking your system.

Space Heater Heating Safety Tips

If you use a space heater for additional heat in your home, this section is for you! Whether you use an electric or gas space heater, be sure to remember these heating safety tips:

  • Remember that space heaters are not designed to be the sole source of heat for your home. They are simply meant to supply supplemental heat.
  • Plug space heaters in directly, without the use of extension cords.
  • Be sure the space heater is on a sturdy, flat, level surface.
  • Do not use electric heaters in bathrooms, kitchens, or other areas that may be wet or damp.
  • Check heater cords for any exposed wires or damage, and discontinue use if any damage is found.
  • Use only the fuel recommended by the manufacturer for a gas space heater.

Properly heating your home is important to the health and safety of your home and your family. Following these heating safety tips can help you ensure you are doing all you can to keep your family safe this winter.