Once the colder season hits and temperatures begin to drop, all over the world you will begin to see people starting up their furnaces once again. This is a good time to take furnace safety tips into consideration before starting up your furnace leads to a major problem or tragedy. Below are 5 furnace safety tips to keep your home warm and safe.
1. Remove Flammable or Combustible Items
Clear the furnace area of any combustible or flammable items. You should not be storing any cleaning supplies or detergents around this area either as they may give off particulates and fumes that may be flammable and lead to accelerated corrosion of various furnace parts.
2. Inspect Furnace Filters
Prior to starting up your furnace, be sure to inspect your filter. If your filter is dirty, it can stop air flow to your home which will waste both energy and money. If a filter is dirty it can even lead to your furnace becoming too hot and the heat exchanger cracking. If this happens, carbon monoxide may enter into your home and this is toxic and can be fatal. Change your furnace filters every 3 to 4 months.
3. Replace Old Furnaces
Replacing older furnaces can be a bit tricky as not many people know when it is really time to do this. Although many people do not want to do it, unfortunately replacing your old heating equipment is important and a necessity. Timing it right before the furnace is beginning to cost you a lot of money for repairs and operating costs is key. Just remember, if you replace your furnace too early, that will not be that cost effective either.
4. New Furnace Installation
It is essential to be in compliance with all manufacturer’s instructions and building codes when you install your new furnace. This means obtaining a building permit and having your new installation inspected. A licensed and qualified contractor will know how to stay in compliance and will be up-to-date with manufacturer’s instructions. The equipment installed should have a high energy efficiency rating or at least the highest you can afford. However, high efficiency systems usually save you more money over the years than the initial investment you put into it. In many cases, they even qualify for utility and government rebates.
5. Avoid Doing Repairs Yourself
You should never attempt to do your own repairs yourself on your furnace. You might come across websites that say that an untrained person is able to handle the same type of job that a qualified technician can. This is not true and very misleading and can be potentially dangerous for you to attempt. You are better off spending money on a qualified technician.
If smaller issues arise and you can troubleshoot or fix common problems with ease, be sure to stick to the manufacturer’s instructions exactly. Since your furnace is one of the most necessary appliances in your household, it is important to have it checked annually. If you have concerns or any doubts when it comes to furnace safety, always play it safe and contact a professional to avoid hurting yourself or even ending up with even more costly issues.