With temps starting to dip into into the 40s at night, you may be tempted to run your furnace. And while conserving energy is great -- it's actually a good idea to get the ole' furnace running sooner rather than later.



Testing your furnace out before winter hits is a wise choice, as it allows you to make sure there aren't any leaks, odd smells or issues. Here are 3 things every homeowner should do to make sure the furnace is running in tip-top shape:

1. Change the furnace filter.
When you're running your HVAC full-time, you'll want to change the filter every 4-6 weeks. At the start of the winter season, do yourself a favor and change the filter, as well. Frequent changes prevent the accumulation of dirt and debris, which can reduce efficiency and lead to equipment failure.

2. Check your carbon monoxide detector.
Test the alarm to make sure it works. Replace the batteries. These simple steps could make all the difference in an emergency.

3. Schedule a tune-up.
A yearly tune-up ensures your heater will work as efficiently as it can -- for as long as possible. A heating professional will make sure that your thermostat is working accurately and that your system is cycling on and off properly. He or she will also tighten loose electrical connections, oil all the moving parts and inspect the gas connections for leaks. Go ahead and schedule your tune-up now -- once cold weather hits, these professionals get very busy!

Bonus Tip: Consider upgrading your thermostat.
If you have an old, dial-style thermostat, consider upgrading to digital. These newer models are much more effective at heating your home -- and you can get one for under $100 (which you'll definitely make back with lowered bills!).

Being a homeowner is a lot of work and responsibility. It's a true labor love. If you have any questions about your home or homeowner's policy, please don't hesitate to give us a call!

Happy Fall!

Photo credit: Peter Stevens, New Thermostat.

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