Winter is nearly here in the Twin Cities, and for many people, that means pricey energy bills for months on end. If you’re one of those people and your heating bills are consistently higher than you’d like, improving your furnace’s operational efficiency can help. How do you do that? Check out our top five tips below.

Ensure Filters Are Clean

Your furnace filter is designed to prevent dust and debris from traveling into the unit and clogging up its components. When you don’t swap out your filter regularly, it can get excessively dirty and your furnace must then work harder to pull air through the clogged filter, reducing the unit’s efficiency.

That’s why routine filter changes are so important. How often should you swap out your filter? That depends on a few different factors, including:

●        How often you dust and clean

●        Whether you have pets and how many you have

●        Whether you or anyone in your household smokes indoors

●        Whether anyone in your home has allergies

Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to change your filter at 4- to 6-week intervals or anytime you notice debris buildup on its surface.

Give the Furnace Plenty of Space

If you want your furnace to function at maximum efficiency, it needs plenty of air circulation in its immediate area. But most furnaces are situated in a basement, a garage, or an attic — places where most people store all of their extra stuff. That stuff sometimes ends up accumulating around the unit, which, unfortunately, can reduce its operational capacity.

If there’s currently stuff around your furnace, it’s time to move it somewhere else. You’ll want to maintain a three- to five-foot radius of empty space around your furnace at all times, both for efficiency and safety reasons.

Schedule Routine Furnace Cleaning

Like any appliance, your furnace can accumulate dust and debris buildup on its operational components, and that buildup can negatively impact its performance. That’s why annual furnace cleaning and maintenance are so important.

If you’re the DIY type, you can do the job yourself, but keep in mind that a professional furnace cleaning specialist can also assess your unit for potential issues that can reduce its efficiency.

Scheduling a yearly furnace cleaning appointment just before winter is the best way to stay abreast of any problems your unit may have. That way, you can handle necessary furnace repairs before the weather takes a turn for the worse.

Keep Your Ductwork Clean

Dirty, clogged ductwork cannot circulate warm air throughout your home as efficiently as it should. If you’ve never had professional duct cleaning or it’s been several years since your last appointment, consider scheduling air duct cleaning service before the worst winter weather hits. 

Maintain Appropriate Relative Humidity Levels

In Minnesota, our air can get pretty dry throughout winter, and unfortunately, dry air doesn’t hold heat as well as slightly humid air. If the air in your home is very arid, your furnace will end up working harder and longer than is really necessary to maintain a constant indoor temperature. But remedying that efficiency issue is simple: use a humidifier during the winter months.

The EPA recommends keeping your home’s relative humidity between 30% and 50% for maintaining good indoor air quality. If yours is below that level, it’s a good idea to get a whole-house humidifier or a few smaller units to not only improve furnace efficiency but also to prevent health issues like dry skin and sinus irritation.

Schedule Furnace Cleaning & Maintenance With Dust Doctors

Ready to improve your furnace’s efficiency? Let our team at Dust Doctors help you out! We specialize in furnace cleaning and repair, duct cleaning, and indoor air quality improvement services for homeowners in Little Canada, MN, and the surrounding Twin Cities metro. To schedule an appointment or learn more about how we can help you, call us today at 651-319-9777 or request a free service quote online.  

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