Your heating and air conditioning system naturally loses energy efficiency over time. This loss of efficiency is due to many factors, including dust and dirt, natural wear and tear, and buildup in drains or on burners. Keeping your heating system maintained with regular professional tune-ups can help to reduce these factors. During your tune-up, your maintenance technician will clean and check over your heating equipment, identifying areas of wear and tear. They can identify failing parts in need of replacement before they become a serious problem. A tune-up alone may instantly improve energy efficiency by up to 30%. You’ll also enjoy cleaner air and a cleaner residence because your HVAC system will be distributing clean air through a clean air filter. Perhaps one of the greatest benefits you’ll enjoy following a fall furnace or AC tune-up is decreased utility bills. A neglected HVAC system must work much harder to heat and cool your home, while a furnace or air conditioner that has been finely tuned can take less energy to maintain indoor comfort. Because your heating system will function more efficiently, it will deliver superior heating at lower cost than you otherwise may have had through the winter season.
When your furnace filter becomes dirty, dusty and clogged, you can expect some negative effects on your furnace efficiency and your indoor air quality. The forced air is supposed to get blown through the filter and the filter is supposed to trap any particles so they don’t end up in your air ducts and throughout the house. When the filter has trapped too many particles and it is clogged up, the air keeps blowing, but some of those trapped particles will end up in the system and your living space. Another effect is that the furnace has to work harder to get the same amount of air through that dirty filter, so your heating bills may go up.
Richard checks for holes in the exhaust flue that could leak carbon monoxide, particularly where the pipe meets the furnace. Small holes can be patched with foil tape, but corroded flues must be replaced. He also adjusts the flue pipe's barometric damper, which moderates the chimney draw. "A big, tall chimney in an old house tends to suck too much air, compromising efficiency," he says. "Your service pro can weight the damper to lessen the draw.
Any forced air system in your home - whether it is powered through electric or gas-generated energy - requires a blower motor. This component consists of an electric motor and fan, and is responsible for pushing air evenly through the furnace. As hvac.com points out, you can easily identify the blower motor in your furnace as the part that looks similar to a hamster wheel at the bottom of the unit. If it stops working, the air needed to heat your home will no longer be pushed through the furnace to be heated and distributed evenly. In that case, you need to inquire about potential repairs. Blower motor repair typically costs between $150 for a simple fix, and $450 for complete replacement and installation of the part. Where you land on that range depends on the exact damage.
You can usually slip the belt on the motor’s (smaller) pulley first and then start it on the blower pulley. Rotate the blower pulley by hand, holding the belt in place but keeping your fingers from getting caught between the belt and the pulley. The belt should slip right into place. If it seems to be too tight or difficult to set in place, it may be necessary to adjust the motor mount to provide more slack.
The oil filter (found in oil-powered systems only) prevents small impurities from clogging the oil-burner nozzle, which could result in a misfire that shuts down the system. Richard first closes the oil valve, then removes the old filter and replaces it, setting aside the dirty filter to be disposed of according to local hazardous-waste regulations.
Before performing DIY furnace maintenance, Richard makes sure to switch off the electrical power and the fuel supply. The distinctive red power switchplate can usually be found at the top of the cellar stairs or near the burner itself, while the fuel shutoff valve is near the oil tank or on the incoming gas pipe. Note the location of both in case of a future leak or fire.
On average, furnace repair costs $287 nationally, with some homeowners spending as little as $60 while others paying $900 for furnace maintenance. Repairs to an electric furnace can run you $300 or less, while gas furnace repairs can be more complex and range from $375 to $1,200, depending on the what needs service. Most homeowners spend between $131 and $453 to fix their furnace. Here is what you need to know, along with the various factors that could affect the price of your furnace repair.
At Bob’s Heating & Air Conditioning, we believe that our customers deserve to live comfortably throughout the entire year. That is why we offer such a comprehensive selection of air conditioning, heating and water heater services in Kirkland, WA. When you work with us, you can rest assured that your furnace is installed properly, your AC maintenance is meticulous, and that your water heater repairs are top notch. Contact us today to learn more about the heating and cooling services we offer throughout Kirkland, WA.