It is about time to turn off your air conditioner and ensure your furnace is ready for the new winter season when you notice that the temperature is beginning to drop, the leaves are beginning to change colors, and a large number of women are flocking to obtain pumpkin spice lattes.
For many homeowners, the thought of winter brings to mind cold temperatures, snow, and low energy bills. But for those in the heating and cooling industry, winter is a time of prep and planning. Getting your furnace ready as soon as possible is highly recommended, so here are some ways to be winter ready.
Make Sure Your Filters Are Clean
During regular operation, a considerable amount of dust may accumulate on the furnace’s filter. Replacing the filter is a simple way to ensure your system operates at its full potential. Therefore, before you switch on your heater for the winter, you should select one of the top furnace filters and then replace the one you have been using with it. Your home’s furnace filters should be changed at least once every three months, as most specialists recommend. Checking your filter regularly and replacing it if necessary will allow it to function at its highest level of effectiveness while also preventing the accumulation of a substantial amount of thick dirt.
How to clean a furnace filter
In order to keep your furnace running smoothly in the winter, it is important to clean your filter. Here are instructions on how to do so:
- Turn off the power to the furnace and open all windows and doors to allow ample ventilation.
- Remove the filter cover by pressing down on the clips that hold it in place and pulling them outwards. The filter will then be free to move.
- Locate the furnace filter media bag (it is a small, square, or rectangular piece of cloth) and remove it by pulling upward on one corner seam and then unfolding it. The media should be extremely dirty; if not, clean it now using a vacuum cleaner with a dust cloth attachment or household bleach diluted 1 part water to 9 parts water (1 tablespoon). Clean both sides of the media before putting it back into its bag.
- Pour about 2 gallons of cold water into a large bucket or sink and add 1 cup of white vinegar (5% acidity) or 3 capfuls of hydrogen peroxide (30% concentration). Swish the media around in the water mixture for about 10 minutes, then pour it through a strainer into another container. Rinse the filter bag several times with cold water, then wring out as much moisture as possible before placing it back on top of the furnace filter cover. Make sure that all air bubbles have been eliminated from inside the filter; if necessary, use a plunger to help push them out.
- Replace the filter cover, ensuring that the clips are properly aligned and that the tabs on the cover are fitted into their slots on the filter. Close the cover by pressing down on the clips and pushing them into place.
Do a Thermostat Check
Moving your system from cooling to heating may require some minor adjustments to work properly. Put your thermostat into the heating mode, and then gradually turn up the temperature until it is a few degrees higher than the present temperature in the room.
Pay close attention to whether or not the heat turns on, and if it does not, check the wire connections that are located under the furnace cover to ensure that everything is secured firmly. When the heat is turned on, it is a good opportunity to additionally check on the blower, heat pump, or furnace fan.
Early testing of your thermostat and heating system gives you a better chance of identifying and fixing any issues that may arise before winter.
Schedule an Inspection
To get your 20x25x5 furnace filter ready for the winter, you should call your area’s experts in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning and set up an appointment for an inspection. Because of this inspection, you should be able to identify any potential for damage or concerns in the future to get them fixed immediately.
A qualified technician will perform a visual inspection of the heat exchanger. They will check for issues such as damage to your coils, enough pressure, and ventilation, among other things. Because your heating system has so many moving parts, you should let the professionals take a closer look at it so that they can spot any problems.
How to replace a filter
Make sure your filters are properly stored: Store your furnace filters in a cool, dry place away from heat and sunlight.
- Check the filter’s airflow: If the airflow on your furnace filter is restricted or stopped, it may be time to replace it. Use a garden hose to check if the restriction is due to dust or debris blocking the passage of air.
- Check the manufacturer’s instructions first: Some cleaners are specifically designed for use with furnace filters, while others can be used on any type of filter. Be sure to read the instructions before using them.
- Use a vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment: Vacuum cleaners with a hose attachment are best for removing large particles and debris from the filter area. Avoid using suction cleaners that have brushes as they can damage delicate fabric fibers on the filter. Instead, try using an upholstery shampooer or a standard carpet cleaner with a hose attachment; both options have been known to work well with heating furnace replacements filters.
As you can see, the maintenance of your air filter annually is one of the most crucial components of keeping your furnace in good working order. Once you have ensured your furnace filter is all prepped for the cold weather, you and your family will also be in a good position to remain warm throughout the winter. The good news is that you should have no trouble locating discount air filters that are both excellent quality and affordable.