The arrival of fall and the cooler weather means it’s time to switch over from the A/C to our furnaces. However, as homeowners make the switch, they may notice an unwanted odor in their home. Don’t worry though, those smells are a common occurrence. Here, Fritts Heating & Air explores the why, what, and how of starting your furnace in the fall, understanding those unusual smells, saving money, and the importance of furnace maintenance.
Starting Your Furnace This Fall
The transition from summer days to cooler fall nights is the ideal time to turn on your furnace. It’s important to ensure your heating system is ready and working efficiently throughout the upcoming months. Here are a few steps to follow when starting up your furnace this fall:
- Change Your Filter – A clean air filter is one of the most vital parts of your HVAC system. It improves air quality, allows your furnace to run efficiently, and helps you save energy and money. Before you start your furnace for the season, replace the filter or clean it if it’s reusable. This simple and easy step ensures better air circulation and minimizes wear and tear on your system.
- Inspect Your Thermostat – Your thermostat helps maintain a comfortable temperature inside your home. Ensure it’s working correctly by setting the desired temperature and monitoring the system’s response. If you have a programmable thermostat, take advantage of its energy-saving features. Fritts Heat & Air can help you choose the thermostat that is best suited for your home or business and will professionally set up and install the units in all rooms or areas that are necessary.
- Clear Obstructions – Make sure there are no obstructions around your heating vents or radiators. Keeping them unblocked ensures that warm air can flow freely into your spaces, preventing uneven heating and reducing strain on your system.
- Safety Check – Before firing up your furnace, check for any unusual sounds. If you notice anything unusual, it’s a good idea to contact Fritts Heat & Air to inspect the system. Safety should always be your #1 priority.
The Mystery of Those Odors
As homeowners switch on their furnaces, many might notice an unusual odor. The smell is often the result of dust and debris that have settled in your heating system during the warmer months. When you turn on the furnace, these particles burn off, releasing a slightly musty or burning odor. This is known as “furnace smell” or “furnace funk.” Here’s what you can expect:
- Dust Burning: Your furnace burns off accumulated dust and dirt, which can create a burning or dusty smell.
- Musty Odor: During the summer, moisture can accumulate in your ducts or around the heat exchanger. When the furnace cranks on, it can create a musty smell as it dries these areas.
- Oil Smell: If you have an oil-based furnace, the fall start-up can emit an oily odor. It usually disappears after a short time.
- Metallic Scent: If your furnace is new, a slight metallic odor can be normal as components heat up.
These common odors should dissipate after a few cycles of your furnace running. If they continue or get stronger, it’s vital to have your HVAC system inspected. Call Fritts Heating & Air to rule out any potential issues.
Saving Money during Fall & Winter
Fall and winter can bring higher energy bills, but there are several strategies and tips homeowners can implement to keep their homes warm while saving money. To start, program your thermostat. A smart thermostat can help conserve energy by learning from your schedule. Set it to lower the temperature when you’re away or asleep and raise it when you’re at home.
Next, seal gaps and insulate where needed. Drafty windows and doors can let cold air in and warm air out. Check for gaps and seal them with weatherstripping or caulk. Proper insulation in your attic and walls can also prevent heat loss. Additionally, don’t forget to utilize sunlight. Take advantage of natural heat by opening curtains during the day. Sunlight can warm your home without relying on your furnace.
Finally, maintain your furnace. A well-kept furnace runs more efficiently, saving you money in the long run. Fritts Heating and Air will service your heating system before winter begins and after the cold season to ensure your furnace is maintained and functioning properly.
The Importance of HVAC Maintenance
HVAC system check-ups, especially during the fall season, are important. Here’s why you should consider scheduling one today:
- Efficiency & Performance – Regular maintenance ensures your furnace operates at peak efficiency. A well-maintained system can help you save on energy costs and maintain a comfortable temperature in your home.
- Lifespan – HVAC systems are a significant financial investment. Routine maintenance can extend the life of your furnace, saving you money in the long run by delaying the need for a costly replacement.
- Safety – Your furnace emits potentially harmful byproducts such as carbon monoxide. A malfunctioning or improperly maintained system can lead to dangerous leaks. Regular maintenance includes safety checks to ensure your family’s well-being.
- Reduced Repairs – Preventive maintenance can catch issues before they become major problems. Fixing small problems early on can save you from costly emergency repairs down the road.
Fritts Heat & Air can take care of all your heating & air maintenance needs. With our residential service agreement, your HVAC system will have two yearly check-ups, making sure your system is properly cooling and heating, depending on the season.
Need Furnace Maintenance? Call Us Today!
Don’t forget to implement energy-saving strategies to keep your heating bills affordable all season long. Also don’t forget to schedule regular HVAC maintenance to ensure your system’s efficiency, longevity, and your family’s safety.
If you have any questions or concerns, or need professional assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to Fritts Heating & Air today. We are your go-to experts for all your heating needs. Stay warm and cozy this fall!