You don’t want to wait until winter arrives in the Pacific Northwest to turn on your heating system. Starting your furnace up in the fall allows you to identify any issues that might have occurred during the summer. The best way to make sure that you’re not left in the cold is to turn on your heating system early in the season to check for signs that the system is healthy and ready for winter.
Turning Your Furnace on for the First Time
When you turn your furnace on for the first time before winter, you want to make sure that the system is running properly and there are no major issues. Here are 4 signs that indicate your heating system is healthy and ready to go:
1. There should be no burning smell.
Once you have turned on your heating system, check to see if there are any abnormal smells coming from the unit. If it smells like something is burning, first check to make sure that there is no smoke or fire coming from your unit. If you see smoke, turn the system off immediately. Use a fire extinguisher to put out any flames and leave the area. If there is no fire or smoke, but you detect the smell of burning, wait a few minutes to see if the smell subsides. If it does not, then this is a sign that your heating system needs a tune-up before you use it in winter.
2. Your system should not make any loud or strange sounds.
After you turn on your heating system, listen for signs that your furnace is in working order. The system should not sound like it is working harder than it needs to or struggling to produce heat. You should also listen for noise levels and check to see if the airflow is excessive. If your heater is making loud noises or appears to be struggling, then you should call an HVAC technician as these are signs that your system needs a tune-up before you use it for the season.
3. There should be no vibration.
Feel the ducts and walls to check for vibration. There should not be any excessive movement or vibration if your system is healthy. If there is vibration, this may indicate that your heating system needs repairs before you should use it. Call an experienced HVAC technician to inspect the unit in order to identify the cause of the vibration. Though the vibration may not bother or alarm you, this could be a sign that a part needs to be serviced or could lead to the need for a more extensive and costly repair later on.
4. Monitor carbon monoxide detector readings.
After you have turned on the unit, check your carbon monoxide detector’s reading. The levels should not be above 30. If they are or if your carbon monoxide alarm goes off, turn the system off immediately and open windows to air out your home. High carbon monoxide levels are a sign that your heating system could be in hazardous condition. You should not use the heater again until it has been inspected by an experienced HVAC technician.
If you experience any signs that your heating system may not be working properly or if you need a tune up before the winter arrives, do not hesitate to call us.