Most HVAC experts recommend scheduling a furnace tune-up at least once a year, preferably in the fall before the main heating season. This ensures that any issues you might have with your heating system are caught and fixed before they turn into a costly repair bill. At Putnam Mechanical, we will be happy to provide that service for homeowners in Charlotte and the surrounding areas, but before we get started, let’s go over what is included in the average furnace tune-up.
The Furnace Tune-up Checklist
The amount of maintenance your furnace needs will depend on a few factors. Older furnaces might require more care than newer models, and you might not need as much maintenance or cleaning if you live alone or aren’t home very often. Meanwhile, a home with a large family and lots of pets might need some more duct cleaning and adjustments. However, most furnace tune-ups will involve the same basic tasks.
Lubricating Moving Parts
Moving parts such as your blower motor need lubrication just like any machine, so your technician will lubricate these parts and tighten anything that may be coming loose.
Adjusting the Fan Belt
The fan belt ties your HVAC system’s fan to a motor. This belt is subject to wear and tear, so it will be inspected, tightened, and replaced if necessary.
Tightening Electrical Connections
Your furnace is an electrical appliance, one that can use a lot of electricity. While an electrician can check your electrical panel to make sure it’s in good shape, an HVAC technician can make sure that all electrical connections in your furnace are sound.
Checking the Heat Exchanger
The heat exchanger is what heats the air in your furnace before it goes through your ducts. A damaged heat exchanger can cause all kinds of problems, so it should be inspected during any good furnace tune-up.
Testing the Exhaust System
The exhaust system vents the dangerous by-products of your furnace’s operation away from your home. It needs to be working properly for the safety of your household, so it will be tested during a tune-up.
Cleaning the Burner
Dust and debris can gather in your burner if your furnace isn’t used for several weeks, so it will be cleaned and inspected as part of your tune-up.
Checking Oil and Gas Line Connections
Oil and gas lines are normally pretty stable, but they should still be regularly inspected and tightened if necessary. Gas leaks are very dangerous, so we will do everything we can to prevent them.
Testing System Controls and Calibrating Your Thermostat
You obviously need to be able to operate your furnace, so our tune-up will include testing your system controls and making sure your thermostat is in good working order. Programming your thermostat will be up to you since it’s based on your own schedule, but we can assist you with that if you wish.
Inspecting the Condensate Drain
The condensate drain removes water that may have condensed in your furnace’s main unit. If this is damaged or clogged, water could leak into your home and cause water damage much like any plumbing problem. Our technicians will inspect the condensate drain and clear it of water if necessary.
Changing Your Air Filter
The air filter in your furnace should be changed regularly, preferably once a month. This is normally up to you – you can buy inexpensive air filters at any hardware store – but we will still check your filter and replace it if necessary as part of a thorough tune-up.
Testing Carbon Monoxide Levels
Carbon monoxide or CO is a highly toxic and odorless gas that can leak from a damaged furnace. We will make sure that your furnace isn’t leaking CO, but we also recommend installing at least one carbon monoxide detector on every floor of your home.
Cleaning the Furnace Thoroughly
We already talked about cleaning your furnace’s burner, but we will also clean the interior and exterior of your furnace to remove any dust or dirt that could affect its operation.
Why a Furnace Tune-Up Is Important
Furnaces should be inspected and maintained at least once a year. Sadly, this is often overlooked by many homeowners. A regular tune-up keeps a furnace running efficiently, which translates into a more comfortable home, lower energy bills, and fewer repairs. If you haven’t already arranged for an annual furnace tune-up, schedule one with our technicians at Putnam Mechanical right away. Not only can we complete a full inspection and tune-up of your HVAC system, but we also offer furnace and air conditioning repairs and installation.
For more information about our full range of HVAC services or to book a maintenance call for your furnace in Charlotte, contact us at Putnam Mechanical today.