Furnace Maintenance Checklist: 6 Ways it Protects Your Family

Fall HVAC maintenanceUPDATED 10/18/2017 When the leaves begin to change colors, and the temperatures dip you know winter is around the corner. To protect your comfort all winter long, prepare for the cold with HVAC maintenance. The six ways Minnick’s furnace inspection improves your Whole-Home Comfort.

Regular HVAC maintenance saves energy

Just like your car, your HVAC system needs a regular tuneup to run smoothly and keep your family comfortable. You wouldn’t drive more than 3-5,000 miles without an oil change so why enter a heating season without a tuneup?

Your furnace needs service every fall and your air conditioner in the spring. Your furnace works hard in the winter, some days running nonstop. You can reduce your energy use with simple maintenance.

HVAC manufacturers and heating and cooling companies both recommend fall maintenance. It offers six benefits:

  1. prevents costly furnace breakdowns
  2. extends the life of your furnace
  3. keeps you safe
  4. lowers your winter heating costs
  5. improves indoor air quality
  6.  increases your comfort

Get a jump-start on winter and save $50! Book a heating maintenance check, water heater inspection and flush, and outdoor plumbing check and save money. Get all 3 services in 1 day!

Maryland heating maintenance

During annual heating maintenance, an HVAC technician cleans, checks, and adjusts your furnace. Dirt is the leading cause of premature heating system failure.

That’s why your system is more vulnerable to breakdowns without regular HVAC maintenance.

It’s easier to make slight adjustments to your heating system before the cooler temperatures arrive. There’s increased demand for Minnick’s services when the temperature drops, plus who wants to live without heat or hot water when it’s cold outside.

Minnick’s offers a winter preparation package deal which includes an annual 16 point heating system checkup, 8-point water heater inspection, and plumbing check to avoid bursting pipes. Book all three services at once, and you’ll receive a $50 discount.

furnace maintenance checklist
Furnace maintenance checklist

Your heating and cooling costs account for nearly half of your energy bill, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. It’s your largest energy expense, so it’s important to make sure your furnace runs efficiently in the winter.

Minnick’s 16-point furnace inspection checks all elements of your home’s heating system increasing your comfort, reducing energy use, and preventing costly breakdowns when you need your furnace most.

Minnick’s technician checks the following 16 points during a furnace inspection:

  1. Thermostat check
  2. Check for gas leaks in heating unit
  3. Gas pressure check
  4. Clean and adjust safety controls
  5. Clean and adjust pilot assembly
  6. Check high limit controls
  7. Clean and adjust burner for efficiency
  8. Examine heat exchanger
  9. Check and lubricate blower
  10. Lubricate moving parts
  11. Clean and adjust operating controls
  12. Monitor flue draft
  13. Monitor Carbon Monoxide (CO)
  14. Check air filters
  15. Measure for correct airflow
  16. Measure temperature differences

Yearly HVAC maintenance protects your family and your bottom line. It improves indoor air quality, prevents breakdowns, increases Whole-Home Comfort and keeps you safe.

HVAC maintenance keeps you safe

First and foremost, HVAC maintenance check keeps your family safe.

During fall maintenance at a Laurel, Maryland home, Minnick’s HVAC technician found a safety issue.

“During my regular fall heating maintenance visit, the technician, Landon, found gas leaks around the furnace and water heater. He got in touch with Minnick’s plumber, Mike, who came promptly to check things,” the customer wrote.

A fall maintenance checkup protects your family’s safety, checking for dangerous gas leaks in and around the equipment. Left unfixed, gas leaks can cause a fire, carbon monoxide poisoning, or an explosion.

The HVAC technician detects leaks, but also inspects the area around your furnace. A Minnick’s tech captured this photo of a piece of carpet near the furnace flue. The pipe gets hot, so it’s important to keep debris away from it. Again, you don’t want to risk a fire or worse for your family.

Some homeowners store the owner’s manual for the furnace nearby. The small shelf near the flue is not a good place to store anything.

Most HVAC systems are in the basement so it’s common to store materials nearby. Keep boxes, furniture, paint, and cleaning supplies away from your furnace to reduce the risk of fire.

Finally, the HVAC technician makes sure carbon monoxide levels are safe. CO2 is an odorless and tasteless gas that kills. That’s why Minnick’s tests carbon monoxide levels during every furnace inspection, and recommends homeowners buy a carbon monoxide detector to continue protecting their family.

How furnace maintenance improves indoor air quality

When the temperature drops, we spend more time inside. That may flare up allergy-like symptoms if your home has poor indoor air quality.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the air inside the average home is up to five times more polluted than the air outside. If you fail to properly maintain your HVAC system you could be circulating those pollutants throughout your home.

Improving indoor air quality is another benefit of furnace maintenance.  The technician cleans the equipment, improving your home’s air quality. He’ll also recommend a new air filter if it’s time to change it. Regular furnace maintenance is important for every homeowner, but especially allergy suffers who suffer from poor indoor air quality.

Fewer breakdowns

Nobody wants to lose their heat in the middle of the winter. Regular, preventative HVAC maintenance reduces unexpected failures

In addition to preventing breakdowns with Minnick’s furnace maintenance, we offer Smart Maintenance to Maryland homeowners. This smart HVAC technology takes the worry out of HVAC ownership.

First, the HVAC technician installs custom sensors on your unit. These monitor HVAC performance, and predict and prevent breakdowns while protecting your comfort.

Then, the Smart Maintenance system goes to work providing unprecedented data about your system. That information allows the system to detect up to 80% of HVAC issues before they happen.

Smart Maintenance is an extra layer of protection, on top of regular maintenance, to prevent costly breakdowns and maintain your comfort. Also, you get 12 remote maintenance checks a year rather than just one during heating and cooling season. Finally, the technology is so good you’ll only need one maintenance check a year rather than one before heating and the cooling season.

The cost is just $49 a year, plus a one-time installation fee.

Whole-Home ComfortImprove Whole-Home Comfort

Most of all, fall maintenance protects your Whole-Home Comfort all winter long. When a homeowner doesn’t feel comfortable at home in the winter, they usually blame their furnace. While your furnace keeps you warm, its effectiveness and efficiency depend on other components in your home too.

While a tuneup improves efficiency and makes the unit last longer, efficiency also depends on other components in your home. Air leaks, insulation, duct leaks, and your indoor air quality all affect your comfort. As a result, it doesn’t matter how high you crank the heat. Your home won’t feel warm and comfortable if you have poor insulation or air leaks.

An energy audit identifies areas of energy loss and efficiency. Minnick’s Energy Audit looks at how your entire home performs. BGE and Pepco customers qualify for special pricing and rebates. These lower the cost of energy efficient home improvements. An energy audit offers up to 10 benefits, so it makes financial sense to consider one if you’re experiencing heating and comfort problems at home.

Save money

Finally, when your furnace is clean and running smoothly, it lasts longer and costs less to run it. Extend the life of your unit with regular maintenance. Plus, save money on your utility bills.

Winter Preparation Package

While heat is essential in the winter, so is hot water. Who wants to take a cold shower when it’s cold outside?

For this reason, Minnick’s offers a winter preparation package. It includes an annual heating system checkup, 8-point water heater inspection, and plumbing check to avoid bursting pipes.

The fall is the best time to prepare for winter, and preparing your furnace will keep you comfortable all winter long.