Why Do You Need A Furnace Tune- Up?

February 16, 2015

Updated 2/27/19 
 
A scheduled check-up for your furnace is about as exciting as it sounds. However, as we approach the colder months, now is the smartest time to guarantee your furnace is ready to provide you maximum comfort throughout the season.

Among the leading ways to reduce furnace breakdowns and make sure it runs as it should is with yearly scheduled tune-ups on your furnace. Just like any mechanical equipment, the useful life of a furnace will be prolonged with preventive maintenance, by ensuring that all the elements of the unit are running efficiently. Also, regular cleanings can help pinpoint issues before they become big problems and you end up paying emergency rates on a cold winter night. Also, because furnaces burn fuel to make it hot, it’s important to examine all the various components to ensure there aren’t any splits or leaks that could impact the safety of your home. Taking the time to schedule a tune-up, even when it’s not making that odd rattling noise you’ve been ignoring, will save you time, stress, and money throughout the heating season.

Is it true my warranty is voided if I don’t get tune ups?


Most manufacturers’ warranties require yearly equipment maintenance to remain valid, so missing your tune-ups can possibly result in losing your heating system warranty, which can be major money if your equipment does ever stop working in the middle of winter. Make sure you get all you can from your warranty by keeping it valid as long as possible with yearly furnace system tune-ups from Freschi Service Experts.
  
Furnace burners

What can I do to troubleshoot my furnace before calling a tech?


Here are a couple troubleshooting tips we suggest checking out early on in the heating season:

1. Inspect your home’s air filter

Air filters can easily be overlooked, but their importance to your home’s furnace efficiency cannot be overstated. Dirty air filters can mean a variety of comfort annoyances for homeowners, including:
  • running
  • Restricted airflow
  • Reduced efficiency
  • Higher energy bills
If you remove your home’s air filter, hold it up to a light. If you can’t see light coming through it, it’s most likely been a while since your last heating service, and likely time to swap it out. If it’s a simple disposable air filter, just get a like-size new one. It’s also a good idea to write down the date you installed the new filter, so you know how old it is next time it needs to be swapped out. Check the filter packaging to see how long the new air filter is designed to be used.

2. Double check your thermostat.
  • One of the most basic tasks that homeowners can do is keep an eye on the thermostat.
  • Make certain it is set to Heat and not Cool, and that the temperature setting is higher than the current indoor temperature.
  • If you can’t remember the last time you changed your thermostat’s battery, now is the perfect time to do that.
  • When first moving over to your heat setting, turn your thermostat up a few extra degrees to make certain that it is running as it should be and heating your home’s air.
3. Open up your air vents.

There’s a common misconception that you can boost your savings by shutting the vents (supply registers) in rooms that aren’t being used. Resist the urge to close all of them, as doing so can actually increase the pressure in your furnace, making it work harder to heat your home. This can result in failed blower motors, mold or mildew in your ducts, damage to the compressor, a burst heat exchanger, and other problems. What Does a Furnace Tune-Up Include?
  • Full inspection. The service should include a full visual and point review to check all the working parts of your furnace and duct system. An experienced service technician should be able to identify any concerns or signs of excessive wear during this review.
  • Lubrication. Mechanical equipment needs lubrication to reduce friction between the moving parts. Your furnace tune-up should include a complete lubrication.
  • Pilot and gas pressure adjustment. As part of your tune-up, adjustments should be made to the pilot and gas pressure when needed to reestablish these elements to manufacturer specifications.
  • Filter replacement. A comprehensive furnace tune-up should include a normal 1” filter replacement with your service. Many furnace filters need to be replaced at least every three months, which can boost efficiency and prevent operational glitches.
  • Written assessment. Credible HVAC companies should give you their analysis in writing or on the receipt with your tune-up, including their professional maintenance proposal for the next year. This insightful information can help you figure out the current condition of your furnace and outline ways to lower your energy bills.

4. Is the Furnace Getting Electricity?

Shift the thermostat to “on” from “auto” to force the fan to operate. If the fan does come on, power is working right, but if it doesn’t, your furnace might not be receiving power.

5. Is the Furnace Switch Working Properly?


All furnaces have a power switch (similar to a light switch) either on the furnace or located on a wall close to the furnace. Flip the switch and wait a few minutes to see if the furnace starts working. Also check to see if all access panels and doors on the furnace are completely closed.

6. Condensate Drainage


High-efficiency furnaces can drain off several gallons of water every day. If the drain lines are clogged with dirt and debris, the furnace will shut down.

7. Examine Vents for Blockage


If your furnace vents out the side of the house, examine if anything could be blocking the intake or exhaust. Confirm the space is clear of leaves, animal nests, or snow/ice.


What Should You Expect After a Furnace Tune-Up?


Improved Function

Your heating and air conditioning system naturally loses energy efficiency over time. This loss of efficiency is due to many factors, including dust and dirt, natural wear and tear, and buildup in drains or on burners. Keeping your heating system maintained with regular professional tune-ups can help to reduce these factors. During your tune-up, your expert technician will clean and check over your furnace, identifying areas of wear and tear. They can identify failing parts in need of replacement before they become a larger problem. A tune-up alone may instantly improve energy efficiency by up to 30%. You’ll also enjoy cleaner air and a cleaner house because your HVAC system will be distributing clean air through a clean air filter. Perhaps one of the greatest benefits you’ll enjoy following a fall furnace or AC tune-up is decreased utility bills. A poorly-maintained HVAC system must work more to heat and cool your home, while a furnace or air conditioner that has been professionally tuned can take less energy to maintain indoor comfort. Because your heating system operates more efficiently, it will deliver superior heating at lower cost than you otherwise may have had during the coming months.

A Longer-Lasting HVAC System

Your HVAC system is an expensive investment with a limited lifetime. Depending on use, with proper maintenance you can expect your furnace and air conditioner to perform between 8-18 years before you will need to consider replacement. However, poor maintenance is one of the primary reasons for earlier replacement HVAC systems before end of average life expectancy.

If you’re wondering how much a furnace tune up costs, you can rest easy knowing it’s not going to force an early withdrawal you’re your 401k. Often we have special offers in your local area that you can take advantage of.

It’s preferable to take action now and be prepared than to regret it during the coldsnap of the century when your furnace isn’t working. If you would like to learn more about what a furnace tune-up includes, or how it benefits you—give our experts a call at 866-397-3787 or schedule an appointment online.

 

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