DIY Tips From the Warner Service Blog

How To Perform HVAC Maintenance In The Winter

Posted by Warner Service on Jan 5, 2018 9:00:00 AM

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If you’re in the Frederick HVAC area, you know that Maryland winters can be harsh on your home heating system. Fortunately, Warner Service has a few HVAC maintenance tips for you to survive this season:

Perform a home energy audit. Energy providers and other businesses offer home energy audits as an affordable way to save on monthly energy bills. Energy audits diagnose ways in which your home is losing heat in the winter, finding air leaks around doors and windows as well as improper insulation in the attic and/or garage. By diagnosing these heating problems, you can find solutions to make your home more heat-efficient this winter.

Use multiple heat sources. To save on your monthly heating bill, cool down infrequently visited rooms or floors. This is called zoning, and the practice can be very useful in larger homes.

Zoning controls which rooms receive heat through a programmable or smart thermostat. Some homes utilize full forced-air heating systems that offer zoned comfort solutions, but you can achieve a form of basic zoning by closing vents to the room you wish to keep cool (as long as your thermostat isn’t in that room). In this closed room, use a space heater or electric blanket when necessary.

Adjust the programmable thermostat. You don’t need to have the heat on in your home all the time, only when you really reap the benefits. To reach optimal heating, set the temperature lower when you sleep or when you’re away. A programmable thermostat is a good solution to finding a consistent heating schedule that works for you and your family.

Replace the air filter. One of the most important and simple ways to keep the HVAC system in top shape through the winter is by replacing the air filters monthly. This has a huge positive impact on energy costs, indoor air quality, seasonal allergies, and the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Check the blower belt, and oil the blower motor. Just like in a car, belts and oil are two mainstays of HVAC maintenance. Belts can dry and fray due to increased exposure to outdoor air, which can cause the system to heat your home slowly.

Similarly, if left without lubrication, the blower motor can damage itself due to increased friction and wear on the parts. Both of these issues can result in costlier repairs or replacements over time, so address these heating problems sooner rather than later.

Check the belts to see if they're worn or frayed, and add a oil to the blower motor as directed by the owner’s manual.

Seal the blower doors. Blower doors ensure that combustion gasses produced by the heat system, especially carbon monoxide, exit your home safely without putting your family at risk. After sealing the doors, install or replace the batteries in the carbon monoxide detector.

Check for proper circulation. Thermostats are set to specific settings to ensure that the indoor air is circulated and heated properly to keep the heating system working efficiently. If the vents are obstructed or clogged, the system needs to work extra hard to heat your home evenly. This leads to higher energy bills and more stress.

Remove all flammable objects from around the furnace and water heater. Ensure that paper products, cardboard boxes, aerosols, and other flammable products are kept away from the furnace and water heater, especially if the appliances are kept in a small room.

See if the exhaust flue is clear of obstructions and in good condition, from the furnace to the roof cap. All connections should be securely fastened. Check the exhaust flue by removing the flue cap near the furnace and water heater. Look through the flue to the outside of your home, and ensure that you replace the flue cap securely.

If the furnace and the water heater are in an enclosed room or closet, air each out. These appliances need at least ten cubic feet of air per one cubic foot of natural gas to operate properly. Furnace rooms and closets should have door louvers, vents, or a duct directly to the outside to provide sufficient space.

If you’d rather a heating professional perform these maintenance steps, click on the button below to contact Warner Service for an appointment:

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Topics: HVAC, Maintenance, Energy Savings, Heat, Do-It-Yourself