Is your heating system braving the long, harsh winter? As cold temperatures take hold all over the country, it’s important for homeowners to safeguard their homes from heating system breakdowns.
“It’s fairly simple to ensure your home is ready for the freezing months ahead,” says Mike Clear, vice president of operations for home warranty company American Home Shield, which has responded to more than two million service requests for heating system issues over the past five years.
“Paying attention to little things now can help you avoid problems down the road, like unexpected repair or replacement expenses or disruption to your family’s routine.”
Clear offers tips to help you maintain your heating system and keep your home warm this winter:
- Schedule a maintenance check-up
Each year, have your heating system serviced by a qualified professional. This will not only keep small issues from escalating into bigger, costlier problems, but it can also extend the life of your heating system. During the heating season, check the system filter and inspect the exhaust vent for rust and wear at least once a month.
- Replace your filters
Be sure to regularly check your heating system’s air filters and replace them as necessary, or at the manufacturer’s suggested intervals. Clean filters can help cut energy usage, extend the life of your unit and improve your home’s overall indoor air quality.
- Routinely clean heating components
Easy-to-reach heating system components, like air registers and radiators, should be kept clean and unobstructed. Put this on your weekly cleaning checklist to keep your unit from working harder than necessary.
- Seal the leaks
Keep warm air in and cold air out by making sure your doors and windows are properly caulked and have necessary weather stripping. Not only will this help you stay warm and comfortable, but it will reduce the stress on your heating system.
- Check your hot water heater
Inspect your hot water heater tank for leaks or corrosion, and flush it per the manufacturer’s instructions to eliminate sediment build-up. Test the pressure relief valve once a year to make sure it is working properly.
- Consider a home warranty
A home warranty plan can help you control costs when covered components of your heating system or other covered items break down.
Follow these tips and you’ll stay warm and cozy this winter instead of getting stuck in a heating system rut. For more information and helpful homeowner advice, visit https://www.ahs.com/home-matters. (BPT)
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