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What’s a Furnace Tune-Up?

what is a furnace tune-up?

Fall is here, and that means it's time to schedule your annual furnace tune-up.

While you already know the importance of calling for heating repair when your system fails to function properly, you may not realize that regular furnace maintenance is just as important in the long-term performance of your heating and cooling system. Heater tune-ups are a powerful preventive tool that offers amazing returns on your investment.

If you’re wondering whether you need heater preventive maintenance this year, keep reading to find out why you and every other homeowner should start scheduling furnace tune-ups.

Why Are Furnace Tune-Ups Important?

Keeping your older furnace or heating system in good shape is also the best way to prolong its lifetime and ensure you’re getting the greatest efficiency possible from it each year. Without a furnace tune-up every year, your older HVAC system will be much more likely to lose efficiency quickly and runs a higher risk of failure, particularly during high-use periods when the weather is coldest. Thus, furnace tune-ups by professional HVAC technicians protect the remaining lifespan of your heating system so you won’t have to worry about high heating costs, pending breakdowns, or heating system replacement in the near future.

Especially if your furnace or heat pump has been performing well over the past few years, you may wonder whether it’s really necessary to schedule a heating tune-up before winter. Heating systems incur normal wear and tear as they function throughout the season. While this wear and tear may not cause a breakdown, it will cause a decrease in furnace efficiency over time, which leads to higher-than-necessary heating bills. The only way to ensure your energy bills remain consistently as low as possible is to schedule a furnace tune-up each year to check and clean your system. This reverses the effects of wear and tear, also correcting any efficiency losses associated with yearly use to restore your heating system to like-new condition and top-level performance.

What is Included in a Furnace Tune-Up?

Regular tune-ups protect your car from wear and tear and keep it running its best. The same can be said for the moving parts of your furnace. But what does a furnace tune-up entail?

A complete checklist for an ARS®/Rescue Rooter® heating system tune-up includes:

  • Blower compartment cleaning. Your HVAC system continually draws in airborne dirt and dust. A dirty blower wheel works less efficiently and can contribute to higher energy costs.
  • Wiring inspection and adjustment. Tightening wires and checking connections may help prevent malfunctions and the need for costly repairs.
  • Burner adjustment. Cleaning and adjusting the furnace’s burners will maximize furnace efficiency.
  • Inspection of the heat exchanger, gas pressure and flame operation.
  • Indoor air filter cleaning or replacement. The cleanliness of your air filter affects both the energy efficiency of your furnace and your indoor air quality. Regular cleaning or replacement is essential to keep your furnace running smoothly.
  • Igniter or pilot light inspection to ensure their proper functioning.
  • Checking duct connections and air flow. We ensure peak performance by making sure the air is flowing properly through your system and throughout the house.
  • Additional safety and efficiency checks. The more efficient your furnace, the less energy you'll waste and the more money you’ll save on utility bills! We'll also check for carbon monoxide leaks that can be dangerous to your family.
  • Advice from a pro. Our comfort advisors will be glad to answer any questions you may have regarding your system—from its overall health to ways it can be improved. If you’re considering adding a humidifier or dehumidifier, air cleaning equipment, carbon monoxide detectors or total HVAC system upgrade, our experience is at your service. 

I Just Bought a New Heating System, Do I Still Need a Tune-Up?

Homeowners may also wonder whether it’s necessary to tune up their new or old heating system. New heating systems can benefit greatly from regular maintenance and heater tune-ups every year, as this preventive measure is the very best way to ensure your new furnace lasts as long as expected. A new furnace is typically predicted to last 15-20 years, but these predictions include the assumption that regular yearly maintenance will be performed on the heating system. When this requirement is not met, the system will be much more likely to fail after a period less than the expected lifetime. Conversely, homeowners with an older furnace in place may think it’s not worth the cost to maintain an older appliance.

If I Own a Heat Pump, Do I Need a Fall Tune-Up Too?

Yes! Because a heat pump unit both heats and cools a home, we urge tune-ups for heat pumps twice a year. Compare it to a central air setup of an air conditioner and a furnace. You schedule a tune in the spring for the AC and a tune-up in the fall for the furnace. With a heat pump performing both functions, each type of system needs tuning up for both seasons. When you inspect the unit twice a year, it can help ensure that your heat pump is working at prime efficiency all season long.

The differences of the furnace tune-up checklist and what would be included in a heat pump tune-up checklist vary a little based on their equipment and components. Seasonal heat pump maintenance can address any cooling issues after summer and prepare it for the coming winter. A fall tune-up makes sure the heat pump is ready to switch to heat mode. In the spring, you'll reverse the system and get ready for switching back to air conditioning mode. 

Schedule Your Fall Furnace Maintenance Today!

A well-maintained furnace can last 15 to 20 years, so it’s worth the time to protect your investment. Contact ARS®/Rescue Rooter® at 1-800-277-9400 to learn more about our heating, cooling, plumbing, and electrical services or to schedule an appointment.

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