You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

A Simple Guide for Your Heating System Maintenance

Although Arizona is considered one of the warmest states in the country, you can still expect some colder weather during the winter months. The average low in both December and January is 44 °F, while the average high is only 67 °F. So, while it may not snow in the valley area, you still wouldn't want your home to be that chilly. 

As such, regular heating system maintenance is essential. The last thing you need is for your system to shut down due to some problem that could've been solved months ago.  

Here's how to get ahead of the weather and get a good working furnace for your home. 

Understand the Parts of Your Primary Heating System 

First of all, you should understand what kind of heating system you own and how it functions. This will determine what kind of home maintenance you'll need to do on your own and what you leave to the professionals. 

A conventional gas furnace comprises a thermostat, draft hood, burners, heat exchanger, blower, and flue. This is what you'll usually see with a central heating system.  

The draft hood or fan mixes air with gas for the combustion process. Burners ignite the gas. Heat exchangers are heated by combustion to warm the inside air. 

Your blower pushes the air out into your home's ductwork, while the flue carries toxic gases outside of your home.  

Another form of heating comes from in-floor radiant heating systems. This uses water tubing inside of your flooring that provides slower but more consistent heat. 

Traditional radiator systems are paired with boilers to provide heat to different areas of your home. As long as a room has a radiator, it has access to heat.  

Why Heating System Maintenance is Important

Some heating tips for homeowners include lowering your thermostat at night and making use of your ceiling fans. However, the best piece of advice you'll get is to invest in regular maintenance.

Even though it may seem like a waste to hire a professional when you aren't having issues, you'd be surprised what they may find. Better to fix something now before it becomes a much bigger problem later.  

Common Problems

Common issues you may encounter with your heating system are problems with the pilot light, clogged filters, a faulty thermostat, or leaking ductwork.  

If your pilot light won't turn on, then your system can't generate heat. That means you may have airflow without any of the benefits. 

Clogged filters will restrict airflow and prevent the system from heating your home sufficiently. This may also cause your system to overheat and become a fire hazard.  

A faulty thermostat may cause your system to malfunction. It'll either stay on for longer than it should or not turn on at all. Leaking ductwork can also influence this if heat is escaping into your crawlspace or walls. 

What Maintenance Looks For 

When you call a professional HVAC service, they'll look for a few different things around your home. This may range from cold spots to whether or not your system turns on as it should. 

Routine maintenance will clean your coils, drains, and related elements. They'll make sure that your connections and thermostat function properly. Service providers will also take a look at your fuel line and ventilation.  

Cost and Timeline of Repairs

How long it takes to repair your furnace will depend on how long it has been since it was last used, how long you normally run it, and if it gets regular maintenance.  

If you need an entirely new unit, it shouldn't take more than a day to install. This does not include replacing ductwork or fixing your fuel line. 

Prices will vary based on what needs replacing. Filters are cheap and easy to replace. Meanwhile, a draft inducer motor or a heat exchanger could cost over $1,000.  

DIY Maintenance Tips

It's important to do some DIY maintenance between visits from your HVAC company. Their job will be easier, and you have a better chance of avoiding a repair job.  

Replace the filters on your unit every month if you're actively using it. That includes if they look visibly dirty. If you have central air, your air conditioning and heating will both use the same filter. 

Check any outdoor units like your heat pumps for any debris. Clean the area around them and make sure no obstructions are blocking the airflow.  

Pay attention to any changes in how your HVAC system operates or sounds. Some examples include if it takes longer to heat your home, if you smell something burning for too long, or if there are any odd changes to your utility bill. 

Other Ways to Improve Home Heating 

Homeowners who want their heat to work more efficiently can optimize it with a few little tricks. 

Insulate your windows and doorways to prevent your warmer air from escaping to the outside. You can use weather strips to close off your entryways.  

Most ceiling fans have a switch that allows you to reverse the direction it spins. This action allows it to draw air upward rather than push it down. The warmer air near the ceiling is forced back down as the cool air is pushed upwards. 

Even something as simple as opening your curtains on a sunny day can help to naturally heat your home. Keep interior doors open to help with circulation. And use a programmable thermostat so your system knows when to turn on and off.  

Take Care of Your Heating Element Before It's Too Late

Heating system maintenance is an essential part of keeping the heat on and surviving the colder months. The best part is that an optimized HVAC system will work more efficiently and help with your energy savings. You won't need to break the bank to buy a new system.  

Parker & Sons provides professional workmanship in the Phoenix metropolitan area. With outstanding customer service and almost 50 years in the business we specialize in maintenance, repairs, and installation for your home heating system. Our services cover cooling, heating, plumbing, electrical, and more. Contact us with any questions or to schedule a visit.

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