The average gas furnace in St. Louis, MO, lasts a couple of decades. Without the proper attention, though, that furnace may experience a premature end to its service life. Follow these six tips to help make sure your furnace meets or exceeds the average lifespan:

Program Your Thermostat

It’s easy to set your thermostat for the season and then forget about it. Unfortunately, this adds strain to your system and raises your heating expenses. Keeping the same temperature all day long is not how to achieve the highest efficiency for your system.

You can save 10% on your heating expenses by using your thermostat’s programs. To achieve this, you’ll need to lower your temperature by 7 to 10 degrees for 8 hours each day.

Change Your Furnace Filter

While your air contains contaminants that can quickly clog HVAC components, the furnace filter mitigates the situation. However, that also means that your filter clogs quickly, which restricts the air flowing into your system.

To keep your system from straining from low airflow, plan to change your filter regularly. If your furnace uses a 1- or 2-inch filter, expect to change it about every three months. However, you may not need to change them as frequently if you have thicker filters.

Schedule Annual Maintenance

Keeping your system operating effectively all year long requires regular furnace maintenance. Changing your furnace filter is just one aspect of maintenance, but there’s so much more to do. We suggest getting a professional heating maintenance check every fall.

During this maintenance inspection, a service technician will clean the circulating fan and heat exchanger of the contaminants that do get through. They’ll tighten the mounting bolts on the circulating fan, balance the fan and lubricate the motor bearings.

They’ll also check all the electrical connections to ensure they are tight and not causing additional electrical resistance. Finally, they’ll test the system to ensure each step of the cycle initializes and runs properly. You can then schedule repairs for any issues they find before it causes strain or damage to your system.

Utilize Ceiling Fans

The hot air that comes from your vents moves upward. That means the hotter air tends to rest near the ceiling where you can’t enjoy it. Your ceiling fans bring that warm air back down, helping the furnace to more effectively heat the livable space.

You have to change the direction the fan spins to draw the heat down without also creating a cooling effect. Flip the switch on the side of the fan to make the blades spin counterclockwise, which draws cool air up. You’ll only need to run the fan on low to prevent creating too much air movement.

Add Attic Insulation

The better your home keeps the heat inside, the less your furnace has to work. One of the most effective methods of improving this is to add more insulation to your attic.

St. Louis is in climate zone 4, which recommends having 13 to 14 inches of attic insulation rated to at least R38. If you inspect your attic and find you have less, consider adding some additional insulation this year. This will reduce both your cycle lengths and frequency, cutting both your heating expenses and system strain.

Get Furnace Repairs Quickly

When your system has a component that’s not working properly, it causes extra strain on the system. The result is usually extra heat, which causes everything to wear more quickly. In the end, this means less service life for the entire system.

If you suspect your furnace has a minor problem, don’t wait. Have a repair service technician investigate and resolve the issue quickly to prevent bigger repairs.

Keep your furnace running strong for its entire service life. Call to schedule your furnace repair appointment with the experts at Indoor Comfort Team today.

Image provided by iStock

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