How’s your home furnace? That may seem to be an odd question to ask as winter won’t be arriving in the Alberta area, like the town of Stony Plain or the city of Edmonton, until November. Upon closer look, though, now is actually a good time to see if the furnace will meet your heating needs come the cold season. After all, as Canada is far up north, its winters are relatively colder, thus requiring home heating systems to work harder.

Giving your heating suite a good check-up while the cold days and nights aren’t here yet is a great idea. If your furnace is not up to snuff, your utility bills will rise. Worse, it may break down in the middle of winter.

Is Your Furnace Working Well?

Below are some aspects to take into account when checking your furnace:

First of all, is power. Before you can do a test run, make sure the unit is receiving power. Check the main entrance panel for any tripped breakers or blown fuses, and replace any broken components as necessary. Check if all necessary switches are on and the thermostat is set properly.

Now, as the furnace runs, it’s time to use your senses to detect signs of problems. Strange smells are among the most definitive signs of problems in the furnace since furnaces are designed to not emit any odours. Burning and smoky smells can mean problems in the filters and ventilation. Gas and burning plastic are more critical warning signs; immediately turn off the furnace in such cases.

Odd sounds are also indicative of problems. Keep in mind that furnaces aren’t exactly quiet. Some rattles and ticks are normal. On the other hand, rumbling, crackles, grinding, snapping, strong humming, and sizzling sounds can signify grave issues.

Next is appearance. A dusty and dirty furnace simply isn’t healthy, but all that is needed is some good cleaning. More concerning are burn marks and rust. Also, look at the flame: a yellow color indicates oxygen starvation which can mean the burners are dirty.

If you spot any of these signs, have your system examined further by professionals to determine the exact problems and the appropriate solutions? Do not attempt to implement any fixes by yourself. Leave the job to technicians working with specialist firms such as Capital Plumbing & Heating Ltd.