Need to do a little furnace maintenance to prep your heating system for winter? Let our team at Dust Doctors help you out! If you’re unsure how to get your HVAC system prepped for cold weather, we’ve listed a few helpful tips below.

1. Turn Up the Heat

To get things started, you’ll want to change your thermostat setting to a few degrees above your normal room temperature to test its functionality. If you don’t hear the furnace turn on within a minute or so, you’ll need to investigate why. Check the wiring connections, power source, blower, fan, and heat pump, but if you’re unsure how to do this, call a furnace repair contractor.

2. Swap Out the Air Filter(s)

Before you start using your furnace regularly, make sure you change your HVAC filter(s). Throughout winter, you should swap them out every 30 to 45 days since you’ll likely be spending a considerable amount of time in your house. Keeping up with regular filter changes will both prolong the life of your furnace and help keep your indoor air quality high.

3. Cover Up the Air Conditioner’s Condenser

You’ll want to protect your a/c condenser from harsh winter weather and falling icicles, so make sure you cover it up before it starts snowing. You can use a board to cover and protect the fan or even a trash can lid secured with bungee cords. Whatever you do, though, don’t wrap the unit in a tarp as that can trap moisture against the unit and cause rust to develop. 

4. Clean and Inspect the Furnace

Like any appliance, your furnace needs periodic cleaning to maintain optimal functionality and autumn is the perfect time to do the job. To prep the unit for winter, you’ll need to:

●        Clean the heat exchanger

●        Clean the blower motor

●        Lubricate the blower motor

●        Clean and test the burners

●        Remove debris from the drainage tube

●        Test the control valve

If you’re unsure how to perform furnace cleaning or you’re uncomfortable working on your unit, call in a furnace maintenance specialist. A pro can both clean and inspect your unit and test all of its components for functionality. If there are any issues present, he may be able to perform parts replacements or furnace repairs on the spot.

5. Test the Igniter Switch

If you own an older furnace, you may need to relight the pilot flame when you need to fire up the unit. Newer furnaces have electric igniter switches, so you if own one of those, you’ll want to test its functionality before it starts to get cold outside.

If the switch is unresponsive when you test it, press the reset button and then try again. If it still doesn’t work, have a furnace repair contractor take a look at it.

6. Test Your Carbon Monoxide Detector

When your furnace is running, it’s very important that your carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. Since carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, you have no way of knowing whether it’s present and potentially harming your health. If you don’t have these detectors or haven’t tested them in some time, autumn is the perfect time to install them or run a quick performance test.

Schedule Furnace Maintenance With Dust Doctors

Not comfortable doing your own furnace maintenance? Need a pro to take a look at your furnace to make sure it’s ready for winter? Get in touch with our team at Dust Doctors! We specialize in comprehensive furnace maintenance and cleaning and serve homeowners throughout the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro.

To schedule service, feel free to call our Little Canada office at 651-319-9777 or request a free service quote, and we’ll be in touch.

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