Atel Air Blog

It’s that time of year again when we begin to rely on our furnaces for warmth, comfort and safety. Turning it on for the first time of the season may make you think it is running well, but there are a few things under the hood that, if not checked regularly, could cause problems in your home. Having your furnace inspected every fall, or even better, as part of a regular maintenance agreement, can save you discomfort, inconvenience, and, yes, money.

Having your HVAC system inspected offers peace of mind in a variety of ways. It helps to assure you of safe equipment operation. An inspection will help you identify problems early before your unit breaks down. It will also help ensure that your system is performing at its best possible efficiency, something that will save you money on utility bills. Finally, if your HVAC system inspections are part of a maintenance agreement with your heating and cooling specialist, it will put you at the front of the line should you experience an emergency.

Safety is the most important aspect of a fall furnace inspection for most people. Carbon monoxide, or CO, is a dangerous gas that is difficult to detect due to being colourless and odourless. It is especially an issue in homes with fuel-fired equipment, like a natural-gas furnace. Something as simple as a cracked heat exchanger can silently expel deadly carbon monoxide, and your furnace’s fan can circulate it throughout your home.

Many homeowners have simple store-bought CO alarms which detect and sound the alarm at very high CO levels. The equipment used by an HVAC technician will note much lower CO readings, alerting you to potential issues before they reach the dangerous, life-threatening stage. Your friendly HVAC company might even sell low-level CO monitors for real 24/7 protection.

Another test performed during an HVAC maintenance appointment is called Total External Static Pressure (TESP). This testing incorporates the duct system into the inspection process, allowing technicians to look beyond the equipment for hidden issues. This test reveals the overall system health of your complete HVAC system, uncovering problems that might lead to premature breakdowns. Static pressure testing shows the total pressure the fan must push and pull against, offering an indication of your HVAC system’s overall health.

During your maintenance call, your technician can verify that your supply registers and return grilles are operating at their optimal temperatures. If they are not, this may indicate issues. They may also inspect for poorly insulated or leaky ducts, which will affect system performance.

These simple, routine tests performed by an HVAC technician gather valuable information necessary for the safe operation of your system, identify problems early, and evaluate how well your system is performing. A well-maintained system will last longer and experience fewer repairs throughout its lifetime. A well-maintained HVAC system will also perform better, lowering your energy costs year after year.

If you want the peace of mind that comes with knowing your furnace is operating safely and efficiently and is not wasting fossil fuels, Atel Air encourages you to schedule a maintenance appointment at your convenience. Check into our VIP maintenance program, and reap the benefits of membership!