What Does a Furnace Tune-Up Involve?

January 15, 2015

It’s that time of year again, when the temperature drops and the kids all look out the window every morning hoping for enough snow for school to be canceled. We rely on our furnaces to keep our homes warm and comfortable. Keeping up on your preventative maintenance with a yearly tune-up is important to ensure you can rely on your furnace to do its job all winter long.christmas-girl-hair-hands-snow-window-Favim_com-100584

 

5 Reasons to get a furnace tune-up

  1. Maintains Manufacturer’s Warranty: Most furnace manufacturer’s recommend that furnaces be checked once a year to ensure proper operation and meet the requirements for their warranties. Some warranties can become voided or deny coverage if the equipment hasn’t been properly maintained.
  2. Extends Life of Unit: Just as with your car, preventative maintenance on your furnace ensures you can rely on it to last longer because you can catch little problems before they become big problems.
  3. Improves Energy efficiency: Keeping your furnace running at optimum capacity saves on energy costs by preventing energy spikes that can increase your utility bill.
  4. Reduces chances of costly breakdowns: A furnace tune-up ensures that all components are working properly and cleanly so your unit doesn’t have to work harder than it’s supposed to. One of the most common reasons for a unit breakdown is dirt and/or dust in the components.
  5. Increases health and safety in your home: Furnaces burn fuels such as natural gas, propane or oil and omit combustion gases. These combustion gases are made up of harmful gases like: carbon monoxide, methane, VOC’s and small amounts of sulfur dioxide. Your furnace is designed to omit these gases outside but if your furnace isn’t working or venting properly they could be releasing inside your home.  A tune-up checks for these gases and makes sure that the unit is operating and venting properly so you can be assured that the air inside your home is safe and healthy to breathe.

What does a furnace tune-up involve?

Understanding what occurs during a furnace tune-up may help you understand why it’s so important. The following is a list of the things a technician will do during the course of a tune-up.

  1. The technician will perform a visual inspection of the unit and venting system (flue pipe) to ensure that the joints are sealed properly, have no blockage, and are in good condition.
  2. The air filter is checked to make sure it is clean, it’s replaced with a new one as needed. It’s important to remember that the air flow indicator on the side of the air filter should always be pointing toward the furnace.
  3. The blower motor is checked to make sure it’s clean, working properly, and there are no obstructions. Some models require periodic lubrication and that task will be completed as well.
  4. The burners are cleaned to remove any dust and debris to ensure safer, more efficient burning.
  5. The flame sensor is cleaned with a file and wiped clean with a cloth to ensure proper operation.
  6. The interior of the furnace is checked for defects like rust, holes, and separated seams.
  7. The electrical connections are checked to make sure they are secure and working properly.
  8. The motor and amps are checked by making sure they are pulling the correct amp draw.
  9. The limits are checked using a voltmeter to ensure they aren’t tripped.
  10. If the furnace has condensate hoses and traps they are checked (if accessible) to ensure they are clear and functioning properly.
  11. If the unit has a humidifier, the filter is checked and replaced if needed and the humidifier is checked to make sure it is releasing moisture correctly.
  12. The furnace is checked for temperature rise. This involves taking the temperature of the incoming and outgoing airflow and comparing it with the manufacturer’s specifications to ensure the unit is not overheating.
  13. The gas manifold pressure is checked and adjusted as needed for proper efficiency.
  14. A carbon monoxide detector is used all around the interior and exterior of the unit and throughout your home to ensure that the unit is operating cleanly.
  15. The thermostat is checked to make sure it is set correctly and working properly.

Getting a furnace tune-up once a year will ensure that your home is comfortable, warm, and safe all winter long and may save your wallet from costly repairs.

Do you have any questions we didn’t answer in the above post? Please feel free to share them below and we’ll help you get the answers you need. Also, feel free to comment below. We hope to hear from you soon!

Profile Image Andrea Pohlsander

Andrea Pohlsander is an administrative assistant for Resource Services, Inc. She’s fairly new to the HVAC industry but is backed with the support of expert technicians, including Resource Services’ owner Denny Sult who has over 45 years of industry experience. She enjoys reading, writing, and pursuing creative endeavors like scrapbooking and experimenting with new recipes.

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