What is a Furnace Maintenance Checklist?
A furnace maintenance checklist serves as a guide to identifying which furnace component needs repair, cleaning, or adjustment. It is also much easier to determine the main cause of your indoor air quality problems.
HVAC specialists conduct regular maintenance checks every year to identify any damage that might result in inefficiency and accidents. The furnace inspection checklist is the list of all items that need to be evaluated. The checklist might slightly vary, depending on the type of furnace homeowners are using. An oil or gas furnace has certain parts or features that are not found in an electric furnace.
The furnace maintenance checklist also helps home or building owners by giving them an idea of what they’re getting during a preventive maintenance checkup. They can also use it to check their units from time to time to make sure it is running efficiently.
In this article, the following points are explained:
Why Is Furnace Maintenance Needed?
The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) reports that heating equipment, like furnaces, is the leading cause of fire among households. The primary factor of these fires was failure to clean, maintain, and check furnaces.
Just like any equipment, a furnace gets old and subject to the usual wear and tear. If not properly maintained, it is likely to malfunction or break down much earlier than its warranty period.
A broken furnace can also become the source of many problems like the following:
1. Affects Indoor Air Quality
Indoor air quality (IAQ) is essential because it affects the health, well-being, and productivity of the people that live and work in a building. One of the main factors that affect IAQ is a poorly maintained or operated furnace system.
A furnace that does not undergo regular annual maintenance can have gas leaks, which is very dangerous. Prolonged exposure can cause headaches, vomiting, and in some cases, death.
Without a gas furnace inspection checklist, there won’t be any clear standard for checking, which often leads to neglect. Worse, the problem gets detected at a hopeless stage causing a minor repair to become a major one.
2. Lose Your Manufacturer Warranty
Some high-quality furnaces have a 10-year warranty. If regularly and properly maintained, they can last up to 20 years.
On the other hand, a poorly maintained furnace becomes problematic and can last before its warranty period expires. If that happens, the manufacturer warranty becomes void and the owner won’t be able to receive the desired outcome they are hoping for.
3. Increase Energy Bill
A furnace can take up 50 per cent of the total energy bill. It can even run higher during the winter season when the air becomes much colder.
However, a well-maintained furnace will run more efficiently and require less energy. Having a gas or oil furnace checklist reminds homeowners when to change the filters, have the thermostat calibrated, check the gas pressure, and many more.
These simple things can increase the efficiency of your unit and your savings. It also prevents frequent and costly repairs.
4. Heating System Becomes Inefficient
Having your furnace checked before winter kicks in ensures you of a warm and cozy home even when the weather outside becomes bitterly cold. It ensures that you won’t wake up in the middle of the night because your furnace is not working.
What Is Included in a Furnace Inspection Checklist?
Gas, oil, and electric furnaces have some features or components that are different. But here are the parts of a general furnace maintenance checklist:
1. Check And Calibrate Thermostat
The thermostat indicates whether there is something wrong in the furnace system. It controls the furnace so make sure that it is at its optimal performance.
An increase in energy consumption indicates that the thermostat is either broken or needs to be calibrated.
The thermostat loses its calibration if dirt gets inside or it’s accidentally bumped. Have the thermostat checked and calibrated every year. For best fuel and cost efficiency, install a computer controlled thermostat.
2. Check The Burners
Energy efficiency depends on the furnace burners. Undetected leaks cause corrosion or rust buildup on your burners.
A red or orange pilot flame, hissing sound, and the smell similar to rotten eggs are some of the most common signs that burners have a leak.
3. Tighten All The Connections
Loose connections cause a heating system to become inefficient. Therefore, this check should not be missing in any furnace inspection checklist. So you need to ensure that electrical connections are tight and in proper working condition.
4. Reinforce insulations
Proper insulation keeps the home warm in the winter. Inadequate insulation causes the heating system to work overtime. Making sure that a proper insulation is in place can help save money and reduce overhead costs.
5. Seal Ducts
Studies show that 10 to 30 percent of air from the furnace system escapes through ducts. The damage can affect the overall performance of your furnace and also jack up energy bills. Therefore, it is an important item in any furnace inspection checklist.
The ductwork that carries the heated air through the house gets damaged over time. When that happens, the air becomes contaminated with microscopic pollutants that might cause asthma or other allergies.
6. Change Filters
Changing or cleaning the filter improves indoor air circulation. Failure to do so can add more stress to the air compressors which can lead to mechanical failures. Ensure then that you regularly perform air compressor inspections to check whether the filters need cleaning or replacing.
Digital solution for furnace maintenance
Preventive maintenance of furnaces contributes to efficient and safe operation. However, proper documentation of maintenance results is sometimes neglected or maintenance work on furnaces is not performed regularly. With Lumiform, the mobile and powerful inspection application, these and other challenges can be overcome:
- Generate real-time data on furnace maintenance. This makes the quality and reliability of maintenance work measurable and constantly optimizes processes based on the data.
- After maintenance, generate reports automatically – this saves complete follow-up.
- Increase efficiency of internal processes: more efficient communication within the team, with third-party vendors, and with house owners, as well as faster incident reporting, means that any damage that occurs is resolved up to 4x faster.
- Continuously improve quality and safety: Through the flexible form builder furnace maintenance checklist can be constantly optimized.
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