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Sure, we may already be halfway through this winter, but there’s still a lot of cold weather ahead of us. Here in Olathe and the surrounding area, we’ve already seen some seriously chilly temperatures, and there’s more to come. We’re sure to see more snow, more freezing rain, and more reliance on our furnace to help keep our homes comfortable (sometimes even livable) during this often-frigid season.

Throughout the winter months, we rely heavily on our furnace and our heating and cooling system to help keep us warm and cozy, but do we take care of it in turn? Could we accidentally be ruining our residential furnace through carelessness or neglect, leading to an inevitable failure just when we need it the most? That’s exactly what we’re here to talk about today: How you might be harming your residential furnace without knowing it, and what you can do to stop.

Accidentally suffocating your furnace. You already know that your HVAC system warms and cools your home by pushing air through all the vents, but you may not be aware of how much airflow your furnace and air conditioner needs to function properly. If you restrict the air that reaches these devices, you can suffocate them, which leads them to work harder than they would otherwise need to. This can, in turn, end in a catastrophic failure. You could be doing this in two ways: either by closing or blocking air and intake vents or by not regularly changing your air filter, which allows it to become clogged with dust and other particulate matter.

Not performing your routine furnace maintenance. Preventative maintenance performed by a licensed Olathe heating and cooling service pro such as Davenport Service Company is an essential ingredient in keeping your furnacing running smoothly and in top condition. Routine maintenance not only helps your furnace operate at peak efficiency, it can also catch problems before they become disasters, helping to prolong your furnace’s lifespan while also saving you money and energy and preventing a breakdown on the coldest day of the year.

Ignoring problems and repairs. Like so many things in life, your furnace will let you know when something is wrong. Maybe it runs constantly or struggles to maintain the correct temperature. Maybe your heating bills are through the roof, or you hear strange noises or eerie silences. You may even smell something oddly electrical or like burning plastic. Unfortunately, many of these are all too easy to ignore—or simply not notice in the first place. More troubling yet are unexplainable bouts of nausea, headaches, dizziness, and flu-like symptoms, which can be signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. Whatever the warning signs, you should be aware of your furnace’s behavior and call in a professional at the first sign of trouble.

Heating inefficiently. The goal of your heating and cooling system is to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer, right? But you also want to do this in the most efficient way possible, which means not pushing your system too hard. Trying to keep your home’s temperature at 50 degrees when it’s 110 outside is bad for your air conditioner, and the reverse is true for your furnace. Cranking it up too high when the weather gets cold will subject it to unnecessary strain that will drive up your utility bills and decrease the life of your furnace.

Closing vents. We’ve talked about this before, but it bears repeating. The idea that closing vents in rooms that you don’t use can help to preserve energy is a myth. Your HVAC system is designed to heat and cool your entire house, whether the vents are open or closed. Closing vents simply restricts airflow, forcing your HVAC system to work overtime and causing pressure to build up in your ducts. This is not only bad for your pocketbook, it can be bad for your furnace, too.

At the end of the day, it’s a good idea to take care of your furnace so that it can take good care of you. That means avoiding all these harmful behaviors and making sure that your furnace gets the care, attention, and regular maintenance that it deserves. Fortunately, Davenport makes it easy by offering comprehensive preventive maintenance agreements for your furnace through our VIP Program. These plans not only save you money and keep your heating and cooling system in the pink all year long, they do so in a way that takes the worry and guesswork out of your hands.

How do we do it? Very simple. Besides coming out to inspect and tune up your HVAC system a few times a year, we take over scheduling those visits at a time that will be convenient for you. No more having to remember to call and set up a maintenance visit for your furnace. We’ll call you and make sure that there’s a time that fits your schedule. Then, you can focus on the little things you do around the house, like changing your furnace filters and making sure that your thermostat is set where you want it.

Speaking of… another thing that you can do to help your furnace out is to invest in a programmable learning thermostat. These can help keep your home’s temperature more comfortable while also allowing your furnace to run more efficiently, all without requiring you to do much at all. These thermostats simply learn your patterns and make small adjustments to ensure the most efficient heating (and cooling) possible. Plus, most of them can be controlled from your smartphone or other device.

Whether you need to schedule a furnace tune-up, have concerns about the performance of your HVAC system, or just want to learn more about our VIP Program, Davenport Service Company provides “customer first” Olathe heating and cooling service. We’ve been your trusted HVAC pros for more than 30 years. Give us a call today at 913-441-2222 and let us make sure that your furnace is ready to face the rest of the winter and beyond!

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