It’s almost arrived. You know, that time of year when we can finally stop running the air conditioner. Sure we Houstonians appreciate a good AC unit, but after months and months of high bills we are all ready for a change. Pretty soon the AC will be off for good and in its place the heater will bring nice, warm air into our home. But before you turn on the heater for the first time, it’s important to have it checked out to make sure all its parts are working safely and correctly.
Annual checkups are vital to the efficiency of your heater and air conditioning unit. They should be done twice a year: in early spring for the AC unit, and in early fall for the heater. Doing so will help you spot and fix potential problems before they have a chance to get worse.
“All heaters should be inspected at the end of September or early October, and during this inspection all of its parts need to be checked,” said John Moore Services HVAC Manager Charles Griffith. “This is an important part of continual maintenance, which is key to the longevity of your unit. As long as you take care of your unit and have it serviced when it needs to be, you can easily get 10-12 years out of it.”
Here are some of the things John Moore technicians look for when performing an annual heater inspection:
Blockage in the vent or drainage system
The vent and drain are essential parts of your system. Your heater will perform at its best and last much longer with proper drainage and vent piping care by a qualified technician and will also keep your energy bill low.
Accumulation of dust and debris
Over time, dust and other particles can roam into your system and cause blockage and other damages. Also, airflow is compromised when dust gets in the way. A professional knows the right way to get around your system and clean it properly.
Rust and corrosion
If a part needs to be replaced, don’t wait to get it fixed before it does additional damage to your system. Metal can rust after not being properly cleaned and maintained for a long period of time, damaging parts of your system that are vital for proper working condition.
Dirty flame sensors
If your flame sensors are dirty, your burner cannot turn on, causing your heater to not produce heat. An experienced John Moore technician will properly clean these so your system functions correctly.
Even though the individual parts of your system are working, the physical condition of the heater is important too. John Moore technicians will make sure that both the interior and exterior of your heater meets the highest standards.
Emission of dangerous, undetectable gases
HVAC service technicians always check the carbon monoxide levels, as well as other gases, in your system to ensure there are no leaks, which can be a huge threat to your safety and health.
If that last one doesn’t raise any eyebrows, it should. Carbon monoxide can leak and go completely undetected for quite some time, leading to health problems or even death.
Deemed the Silent Killer, carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, and kills on average 169 individuals a year according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. In a 2012 study by the National Fire Protection Association, an estimated 72,000 non-fire carbon monoxide incidents were reported between 2006 and 2010. Of those, 94 percent occurred in a home.
Still not convinced you need to get your heater checked out? Let’s put it this way. According to Griffith, during the winter he is called out to customer’s homes for heating problems that could easily have been prevented with regular maintenance. A checkup will not only keep your unit running efficiently, but will catch small problems before they turn into big repairs. And that could end up saving you thousands of dollars.
Before it gets too cold outside, call the expert technicians at John Moore Services and tell them you want a 21-point heater inspection. Being proactive about your heating needs now will save you money later. Also make sure to learn about our Home Maintenance plan for making scheduled inspections and maintenance simple. Give us a call!