AC and Heating Tip from AC Express
Reasons to Get Your Furnace Inspected
It’s gotten to that time of the year now when more and more furnaces and heaters are switched on, as heating in Austin becomes more necessary daily. No one wants to be cold in their own home and because of this we owe a great deal of gratitude to the machines that pump warm air all around us day in and day out in these colder months. But despite the fact that we depend so dearly on our heaters to keep us warm and comfortable, they are not usually something we think about often.
Other than when we change our thermostats, most of us don’t think about our furnaces or what condition they are in, that is, until their condition worsens to the point where they don’t work as they should, then we pay attention. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There’s typically no reason why a furnace should have to have a complete breakdown if it is properly maintained and not too up there in years. That’s the key though, to a healthy and long lasting furnace, “properly maintained.” And that means getting an annual checkup and inspection. This tip is a guide to why it is important to have your furnace inspected and why you should schedule one now if you haven’t this year already.
Why Once a Year?
To those who don’t already get regular furnace inspections, you might be wondering just why this advice, to have a furnace inspection scheduled, is so oft repeated and stood by in the industry. After all, to some of you, it may seem like such an advanced and well manufactured and installed device as your furnace shouldn’t need to be serviced every year like clockwork. It’s not like you have other appliances in your house routinely inspected, like your TV or your refrigerator, unless something becomes wrong with them. But what you have to consider is just how much work your furnace performs, and how much goes on within, over the course of a year.
Think of it like going to the dentist every six months. It’s not like most people have serious issues with their teeth that develop every six months, but by doing this “teeth inspection” twice a year, you significantly reduce the chance that a serious issue will develop. This sort of preemptive protection is important for improving the chance of anything lasting a long time. You want your furnace to remain healthy and working for as long as possible, so inspections are important.
Also, a lot of the times, the language in the warranties of many furnaces makes so that damage to the units caused by improper maintenance is not covered under warranty. Does this mean that an annual furnace check-up is really required, or the warranty is voided? Probably not, but it’s recommended.
Some say that if your furnace is newer that you can get away with getting it serviced once every two years. That’s up to you and your preference really, but if your furnace is more than ten years old, there’s no doubt that you should be scheduling a furnace inspection once per year.
The Three Biggest Reasons
Out of the many reasons why getting your furnace inspected once a year is a good idea, they can be boiled down to three main ones. These include safety, efficiency, and failure reduction. In this next section, we’ll go over each of these reasons in detail.
- Safety and Health
As advanced as furnace technology is these days, the vast majority of them run on natural gas, which poses some threats if things go wrong. Natural gas is a relatively cheap fuel source that gets the job done reliably and efficiently, hence why it is so common used. There is a danger though, with natural gas furnaces especially. That danger is carbon monoxide poisoning. It can be a serious health hazard in the wrong circumstances. Technicians say a furnace inspection can reveal carbon monoxide leaks, which are hard to detect because the gas is colorless and odorless. Carbon monoxide can lead to headaches, dizziness, nausea and even death. An estimated 500 people die each year, and 15,000 people are taken to emergency rooms, because of exposure.
Of course, you should have a carbon monoxide detector in your home which will alert you of a carbon monoxide leak eventually anyway, but it is better for these leaks to be caught as early as possible. And in a furnace inspection, the problems and wear and tears that could eventually lead to a carbon monoxide leak can be detected, which is something no carbon monoxide detector could do on its own. Typically, a leak is caused by damage to the heat exchanger. This is the part of the furnace where the fuel is turned into heat. This part can sustain damage in the form of naturally occurring rust and corrosion. With a furnace inspection, this kind of damage can be detected early on before it even causes a leak to occur, avoiding carbon monoxide poisoning before it even begins. This makes an annual furnace inspection a good idea for the health and safety of you and your family.
- Energy Efficiency
A healthy furnace is an efficient furnace, and an efficient furnace saves you money. That’s the bottom line. To be more precise, energy bills are often a source of great frustration for many in Austin. When the temperature changes and the weather brings in that unfamiliar cold we’ve been accustomed to never feeling for many months on end, many of us compensate by cranking up the heat and living in it comfortably 24/7 or close to it. The problem is this requires a lot of energy. And you’ll see this in your utilities bill every month.
What this means is that everything you can do to help lower your energy usage is going to help you out significantly in energy bill savings. A furnace inspection is great for this. Not maintaining your furnace, whether it's gas or electric, can cause it to run less efficiently, making it work even harder, therefore increasing your monthly energy bills.
Regular furnace maintenance directly affects how efficiently your unit operates. Dirty filters and clogged parts slow down how well the unit functions. If your unit is sluggish and is struggling to achieve the level of heat you want, it will work harder than it has to. This means higher energy bills for you. If you get your furnace cleaned and inspected, it will work much more efficiently, meaning it will achieve the level of comfort you want in a quicker period of time. If you’ve been paying way too much in energy usage, take a look at your furnace as the possible culprit. The thing about low efficiency is that it isn’t nearly as noticeable as a complete breakdown. You may never think of getting your furnace checked out if you’re just waiting for something clearly wrong to happen. So the efficiency of your unit could gradual lower over the years without you noticing. This can be avoided by getting into the habit of having your furnace inspected regularly, once a year.
With something used as often as your furnace, you want it working in as perfect shape as possible. A lot of wear and tear can happen over a year, so regular furnace inspections are highly recommended and beneficial to you and your bills.
- Breakdown Prevention
Could there be a worse feeling than having to dish out hundreds of dollars for a furnace repair that could have been avoided with regular maintenance? The thing about furnaces is that small repairs are cheap, but big repairs are not, and the small preventative maintenance routines included in any annual inspection are going to greatly decrease the chances of a major repair being needed in the future.
Simply put, the longer you put off having an annual inspection done on your furnace, the more likely you’re going to have a breakdown (usually when you need your furnace the most). During an inspection, a trained technician may very well find small problems that if left unchecked could result in a major repair. Preventive maintenance on your furnace guarantees that all the parts in your furnace work together to heat your home safely and reliably for years to come.
So not only are you going to save money in potential future repairs that are now made unnecessary, your furnace is going to have a longer lifespan overall. This means the big cost of upgrading and installing a new furnace will be put off further the more diligent you are with getting your annual furnace inspection. Small problems that aren’t caught immediately can eat away at the furnace, leading to a lessening of life expectancy. You paid a lot of money for your furnace. You can’t afford to replace it any sooner than you have to. It’s a small cost today to stave off a large cost in the future.
Annual Furnace Inspections and Heating Repair in Austin
What we’ve looked at today are the many reasons why it is a great idea to get your furnace inspected every year, preferably before the winter hits in full swing. With an annual furnace inspection, you’ll have peace of mind. You’ll be sure that your chances of needing heater repair in Austin are as low as possible. You’ll be sure that your furnace is as healthy and efficiently working as possible. You’ll extend the lifespan of your unit and prevent potential causes of breakdowns that could result in costly Austin heater repair being necessary in the future.
AC Express is an Austin heating and air conditioning company consisting of some of the most experienced and well-trained technicians available to you today. With our help, your heater can last as long as possible and run as smoothly as can be. To get top notch heater inspection service on your furnace, heat pump, or boiler, call us today!
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