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Stay Safe & Warm This Winter With Routine Furnace Maintenance

HVAC Experts in Vancouver, WA Share Information About Furnace Tune-Ups

Most homeowners don’t think about their furnaces all that much, until something goes wrong. There are several issues that can arise in every heating system. Some common furnace problems include poor indoor air quality, unsafe emissions, and a total breakdown where the furnace stops working altogether. The most inconvenient time for these heating troubles is during the long, cold months of winter.

The best way to prevent a furnace breakdown is to start the winter with a furnace tune up. Routine furnace maintenance goes a long way toward keeping your family warm, safe, and healthy.

3 Ways Routine Furnace Maintenance Protects Your Family

Does your home have poor indoor air quality? Is your furnace safe? Will it reliably keep your family warm all winter long? If you aren’t sure how to answer these questions, you should definitely schedule a furnace tune-up. Furnace maintenance is important because it extends the life of the heating unit and prevents costly breakdowns. An annual furnace safety inspection during a furnace tune up are also the best way to guarantee your family’s safety.

Stay Safe & Warm This Winter With Routine Furnace Maintenance

Furnace Maintenance Keeps Your Family Warm

People in the North experience longer, colder, harsher winters than people in other parts of the world. Although they are used to these conditions, the last thing they want is for their heating system to break down.

A broken down furnace can jeopardize the health of seniors, small children, or people with certain illnesses or suppressed immune systems. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), death rates in the U.S. are 8 to 12 percent higher in winter than in non-winter months1. In 2015 (the most recent year for data), almost 2,000 U.S. deaths were reported as being directly caused by cold or had cold as a contributing factor. Nonfunctional heating systems may have played a role in some of those deaths.

To prevent your loved ones from becoming a statistic, have your furnace inspected and tuned up by a trained HVAC technician. During a tune up, the technician will look for rust, leaks, or any signs of wear and tear that might indicate the furnace could break down. Then the technician will make any needed adjustments or repairs to keep the unit running like new again.

1https://www.epa.gov/climate-indicators/climate-change-indicators-cold-related-deaths

Furnace Maintenance Keeps Your Family Safe

Residential furnaces are responsible for possibly hundreds of deaths every year. Gas- and oil-burning heating systems produce carbon monoxide, which is sometimes known as “the silent killer.” Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas that is a by-product of burning fuel. When inhaled, CO builds up in the bloodstream in the place of oxygen. This causes symptoms of lightheadedness, headache, nausea, confusion and loss of consciousness2. After a short period of severe exposure, carbon monoxide will cause permanent brain damage and even death.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that CO kills at least 430 people in the U.S. every year. Thousands more are admitted to hospitals and treated for CO poisoning3. One of the biggest culprits behind carbon monoxide poisoning is the home furnace.

Residential furnaces are designed to vent all exhaust from the burning fuel out of the house through a vent pipe. In this way, the carbon monoxide emissions are safely removed and your family is protected. But if there is a leak or blockage in the vent pipe, or if the ignition system is malfunctioning, carbon monoxide could begin building up in the home. It would not take long for the emissions to affect your family’s health or to reach dangerous levels.

During a furnace tune up, a professional HVAC technician will assess the heating system’s ignition and vent. They can measure the amount of CO being emitted into the house as well. If they find anything unacceptable, they can make the necessary repair or replacement to restore the unit to a safe operating level.

Because carbon monoxide is undetectable, the best way to prevent CO poisoning is to schedule an annual furnace tune up and to install carbon monoxide detectors throughout the home.

2https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/carbon-monoxide/symptoms-causes/syc-20370642#:~:text=Carbon%20monoxide%20poisoning%20occurs%20when,tissue%20damage%2C%20or%20even%20death

3https://www.cdc.gov/nceh/features/copoisoning/index.html#:~:text=When%20winter%20temperatures%20plummet%20and,due%20to%20accidental%20CO%20poisoning

Stay Safe & Warm This Winter With Routine Furnace Maintenance

Furnace Maintenance Keeps Your Family Healthy

If someone in your household suffers from asthma, allergies, or other respiratory condition, one of the best ways you can protect them this winter is to get a furnace tune up. Furnace tune ups always include changing the air filter and cleaning the inside of the heating unit. High quality air filters can trap dust, dirt, hair, dander, pollen, mold spores, smoke, and other small particles. Cleaning the inside of the furnace also helps to keep dust and dirt out of the air.

Air quality is measured by how much pollution is present in the air supply. Poor indoor air quality usually indicates that the air filter needs to be changed or the air ducts need to be cleaned. But indoor air quality is also affected by outdoor air pollution, so smog from traffic and smoke from wildfires can also be a factor. Indoor air quality is often at its worst during the winter, when homeowners have their windows shut and not a lot of fresh air is being circulated in the home. Routine furnace tune ups will help provide better air quality during those critical winter months.

Viruses and bacteria are on everyone’s mind every winter, but especially this year, as the nation continues to battle Covid-19. Heating system maintenance can help prevent people in the household from getting sick. In addition to routine furnace tune ups, your local HVAC company probably offers multiple types of air cleaning and disinfecting services. Having the air ducts cleaned, for example, can help contain the spread of airborne illnesses. An air purifier that can be installed directly into the furnace or ductwork will kill most germs, including viruses similar to the coronavirus.

For better air quality, safe emissions, and reliable heater performance all winter long, schedule a furnace tune up with Miller’s Heating & Air.

Stay Safe & Warm This Winter With Routine Furnace Maintenance, indoor air quality

Schedule A Furnace Tune Up With Miller’s Heating & Air

Miller’s Heating & Air are the trusted HVAC experts in Vancouver, WA. They have been in the industry for over 73 years, and are recent recipients of the Best of Home Advisor Award. Miller’s Heating & Air offers heating system maintenance, furnace installation and tune ups, air conditioner repair, duct cleaning, air purifier installation, and much more.

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