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Your furnace is one of the most overlooked appliances in your home. After all, you only really utilize it for about half the year, and it’s usually located in the basement or some other out-of-the-way place. Plus, when it’s doing what it should be doing, you probably don’t really give it a lot of thought. But just because it’s out of sight doesn’t mean that it should be out of mind. As your Olathe heating and cooling service professionals, we want to remind you of the importance of checking in on your furnace from time to time.

What should you look for when you do check on your furnace? If it’s making strange noises or the burner flame is yellow instead of blue, those are signs that your furnace needs immediate service. There are plenty of other things that many homeowners may not know or understand about their furnaces, so we’ve gathered some of the most common myths about home heating systems to hopefully dispel a few of them and give you a better understanding of this important but often-overlooked appliance.

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. This is a myth. Anything mechanical needs more than just repairs after it breaks. It needs regular maintenance. Just as your car won’t keep running indefinitely without regular oil changes, your home heating and cooling system needs a tune-up at least twice a year to make sure that everything is working as it should. This not only helps prevent future breakdowns, it also ensures that your furnace is running as efficiently as possible, saving you money and keeping you cozy on those cold winter nights. Fortunately, preventive maintenance agreements from your Olathe heating and cooling service pros provide peace of mind without the hassle.

Your furnace may last for decades. This is a myth. Even a furnace that is regularly maintained and repaired is still only likely to last between 10 and 15 years. That’s simply the lifespan of these machines. If your furnace is more than 15 years old, it may be getting inefficient or even dangerous. Talk to the heating and cooling pros at Davenport Service Company about getting a new furnace for your home.

If you want to get warm fast, crank up the thermostat! This is a myth. The best way to keep your home warm is to keep the thermostat set at a comfortable temperature all the time. “Cranking” the thermostat up higher just causes your system to work that much harder, costing you money and ultimately not heating as efficiently. Conversely …

Keeping the temperature lower when you’re not home doesn’t help. This is a myth. If you’re going to be gone for an extended period of time, it’s absolutely worth it to not heat your house up to the same temperature you’d want if you were home. The extra little effort that your furnace will put in heating the place back up to your desired temperature when you get home won’t use nearly the energy – or cost nearly as much in utility bills – as heating the house the whole time you’re gone. Just make sure that you don’t turn your thermostat down too far when you’re away. Similarly…

There’s no need to change the thermostat at night. This is a myth. The key is to make minor adjustments at night or when you leave the house (such as for work or school). You don’t want the furnace to have to work overtime to get things back up to your desired temperature when you get up or return home, but minor adjustments can actually save you a lot of money on your utility bills over time.

Closing vents in rooms you don’t use can save money. This is a myth. Your home heating and cooling system is designed to balance the pressure levels throughout the house so that your furnace heats your home evenly. Closing vents in rooms that you don’t use simply confounds this system, forcing your furnace to work harder to keep the “balance” right and costing you more in your heating and cooling bills.

Changing your air filter doesn’t make much difference. This is a myth, and it’s a big one. In fact, probably the most important thing you can do to help keep your furnace running smoothly – besides regular furnace service from heating and cooling pros – is to keep your air filter clean, which means replacing it once a month. Dirty filters do more than cause your furnace to run less efficiently. They reduce the quality of your indoor air and can cause your furnace to overwork itself, potentially even leading to mechanical breakdown and costly furnace repair.

You can wait until your furnace breaks down to consider replacing it. This is a myth. Think about it. When is your furnace most likely to break down? When it’s really cold outside, right? Even the fastest heating and cooling service in town will take a little time to replace it, which will leave you and your family without heat when temperatures are at their coldest. By thinking ahead and being ready before you’re in an emergency situation, you can spare yourself a lot of headaches (and a cold house) and probably get a much better deal on a new furnace.

Space heaters are the most effective solution to cold spots. This is a myth. The simple fact is, you shouldn’t be having cold spots in your home in the first place. Modern HVAC systems are designed to heat the whole house, so if you have rooms – or even just parts of rooms – that aren’t as warm as the rest of your house, it’s probably indicative of a problem with your home heating system. You may want to call for furnace service or at least a checkup to see what’s wrong.

It’s normal – and unavoidable – to have cold feet and cold floors in the winter. This is a myth. As we said above, your furnace should be heating your whole house. If everything is doing what it should, every part of your room should be at a comfortable temperature. Cold feet – and the cold floors that lead to them – may mean that your home isn’t properly insulated. You might need to simply check the sealing around doors and windows, or hire someone to come take a look at your home’s insulation.

Now that you know your furnace a little better, give it some love this winter. Davenport Service Company has been in the business of providing furnace service, repair, and new furnace installation in Olathe and all over Johnson County for more than 40 years, so we know furnaces, and we’d be happy to help make sure yours is running at its peak. Whether you’re considering a new furnace or just want to give the old one a little TLC, call Davenport Service Company at 913-441-2222 today!

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