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HVAC Maintenance Checklist To Prepare Your Home for Winter

With summer days behind us and the holidays in full swing, it’s time to ensure your family and home are prepared for winter weather.
The team at McQuillan Homes Services has compiled this DIY heating maintenance checklist to ensure you’re not caught in the cold.

Check Your Vents

Your vents distribute heat throughout your home, so ensure they’re not blocked by furniture or closed. Otherwise, your furnace will have to work much harder to deliver the comfort you need, resulting in more wear and tear on your system.

Replace Your Air Filter

Air filters play a significant role in your home’s indoor air quality and comfort because they prevent dust, dirt, and other foreign particles from continually circulating through the air. You should replace them at least every three months to help your furnace operate as efficiently as possible. If you have pets or severe allergies, you’ll need to replace your filter more frequently.

Inspect & Clean Your Whole-House Humidifier

If your furnace has a humidifier, you can clean the water panel and check for mold. If you’re up to the task, read your owner’s manual and have it ready.
  1. Ensure the power switch is off: To prevent any chance of electrocution, make sure the unit has no power.
  2. Disassemble the unit: Once the power is off, you can carefully take apart the housing and access the inside for cleaning.
  3. Clean or replace the water panel: You’ll find a water pad, evaporator pad, and filter. The panel should be replaced annually or more often, depending on your usage. Refer to your owner’s manual to determine which parts can be cleaned. Most cleanable parts can be soaked in a container of cold water for 20 minutes, rinsed, and wiped down before putting it back.
  4. Clean the exterior housing: You might notice the outer sections of your unit are covered with mineral deposits. You can remove them with a cloth dipped in a 50/50 water and vinegar solution.
  5. Reassemble your humidifier: Take one last look to ensure no signs of damage or leaks, then carefully put your humidifier back together.

Check Your Carbon Monoxide Detector

A carbon monoxide detector is critically important if you rely on gas to fuel your heating system, so check it before you crank up the heat in your home. Carbon monoxide detectors usually have status lights and test buttons so you can make sure they’re working and have battery power. You can proactively replace their batteries and record the date for easy reference, so you’ll never have to worry about a faulty detector.

Listen for Abnormal Sounds

Abnormal sounds from your heating system are warning signs that you need heating repair. To check, increase the temperature setting of your thermostat a few degrees to activate your furnace, then listen for:
  • Squealing
  • Screeching
  • Rattling
  • Rumbling
If you’re hearing anything unusual, your unit is taking too long to turn on, or it won’t turn on, it’s time to call a technician to diagnose the issue.

Schedule Annual Heating Maintenance

It’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to your heating system. That’s why a pre-season heating inspection is always a wise decision. Only a qualified and highly trained professional technician can perform a thorough heating inspection, recognize any issues, and help you remedy any problems they discover. At McQuillan Home Services, our team offers expert furnace and boiler services. For your convenience, our Home Care Club is also available for scheduled heating maintenance with additional benefits like exclusive discounts and priority scheduling. Call (651) 292-0124 or message us online today, and we’ll help you ensure your home’s heating system is ready for winter.

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