Every wise homeowner looks for savings every day. At Howard Air, we understand that instinct and we realize some people want to perform their own furnace service to save on having a professional technician come out.
Some tasks are well within the typical homeowner’s skill set, but please remember, you will save the most money by keeping your furnace energy efficient. Only a full service visit by a trained technician will achieve that.
What You Can Do
The most obvious service you can give your furnace, whether it is natural gas, propane or electric, is to change the disposable furnace filter every month during heating season.
Reusable filters should be cleaned every month. A deep-media filter (professionally installed to match your balanced system — remember that thicker filters can impede air flow) generally requires professional servicing.
Three other tasks for you:
- Sniff Test—Stand in your furnace room and take a whiff to see if you can detect a rotten egg smell. This would signal a potential gas leak. Mercaptan is added to both natural gas and propane to make a distinct odor. If you smell ozone, you could have an electrical short. If you detect any of those issues, contact Howard Air immediately.
- Displace the Dust—Lightly dust electrical connections with a feather duster and vacuum the floor to prevent dust build-up that could make its way into your furnace.
- Take a Peek—Visually inspect your venting system for signs of air leaks (dust trails near seams, or visible holes) that could allow dangerous gases back into your home.
Some websites recommend opening up the furnace to tinker with the blower, heat exchanger and burners. We strongly advise against this. Consider a visitor to the Phoenix Zoo, tapping on the glass in the snake exhibit. What will you do if it breaks? The same is true with your home’s heating plant—what will you do if you break your furnace? Better to leave the insides alone and call Howard Air.
What Howard Air Can Do
When you call us at Howard Air, your Phoenix home’s furnace will receive a thorough, professional inspection and detailed service.
Expect the technician to do all this, at a minimum:
- Check fuel or gas lines—For structural integrity and potential leaks
- Inspect, clean and adjust the burners—This annual service boosts your furnace’s energy efficiency
- Inspect, lubricate or replace moving parts—A furnace has a lot of parts that create unwanted heat from friction; our technician will keep parts running smoothly
- Inspect the electrical connections—To diagnose safety issues and ensure tight connections to prevent sparking
Measure carbon monoxide—This odorless, deadly, invisible gas is a natural product of combustion
- Check ventilation—To prevent carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide from re-entering your home
- Test safety controls—The technician trips your furnace’s safety controls to verify a quick response
If our technician discovers a repair issue, we can usually schedule any necessary return trip right away, to keep your family safe and warm for the winter. Contact Howard Air today to schedule furnace maintenance.