Common Winter Heating Problems to Think About Now
With our first major snowstorm hitting before December 1st, we’ve already begun getting out the cozy blankets and dusting off our snow boots, hats, and mittens. But what about our homes? We want to make sure our homes are equally prepared for the winter months, ensuring we stay warm and comfortable during the colder season.
Wintery temperatures guarantee the heat will be turned on in your home, and there is no doubt that you ‘ll want to ensure that your furnace is ready and problem-free. Even if your furnace worked well last winter, you may notice a few minor glitches this year when you kick on the heat.
If you believe your furnace isn’t providing adequate heat, the first thing to do is to check the air filter. Air filters should be clean and free from debris, allowing the furnace to blow heat out at full capacity.
You should also check your thermostat. A malfunctioning thermostat or a dirty filter can cause heat cycling, where the furnace is turning off and on much more frequently than usual. This not only puts a strain on your pocketbook but lowers your home’s energy efficiency as well.
But sometimes, heating problems are not the fault of the furnace – they can be caused by other issues in your home:
- Are there cold spots in certain areas or rooms? That may be an insulation issue. Improper insulation not only lets cold air in but also allows heat to escape.
- Check around windows and doors for cracks which can allow heat to escape.
- Uneven heating can also be caused by clogged vents or ducts. Inspect these spaces and get the areas cleaned; you may find a much more consistent heating pattern.
- Make sure all vents are open and not blocked by furniture
Even when the heat is turned on and working well, dry air in your home can become a separate issue. Lower humidity levels can not only dry out and crack woodwork in your house, but can also cause dry, itchy skin. Using a humidifier, either as a part of your HVAC system, or as a stand-alone unit, can help create a more comfortable environment. The air in your home will not only hold more moisture, but also hold more heat.
Staying warm and cozy in your home during the harsh winter months is a must. A quick survey of your home’s heating system and environment can not only pinpoint existing issues, but help prevent future problems as well.
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