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Another Harsh Winter Could Be Coming

Posted: October 29, 2014

Cold winter weather.

Posted: October 29, 2014
Posted by: David O’Connell, President

Unfortunately, the Farmer’s Almanac is again predicting another colder-than-normal winter, but together we can get through it. You would never leave your car sitting for six months without maintenance, would you? Complicated machines need maintenance to make sure they work when you need them.

This is also true when it comes to your heating system. Heating systems sit all summer and more without use, and often, without maintenance. Even worse, many homes do not plan ahead and test their furnace before winter! If you wait until winter to have your heating system examined, you may be waiting a while. The smart thing to do is to test and maintain your heating system before you really need it, and as the days get shorter and cooler now is the perfect time to do it!

Below are some simple steps you can follow to get your heating system ready for the cold months. Take advantage of a cool day to keep your home warm this winter.

  1. Tune in.

    Tune-up appointments fill up fast when the weather gets cold, so call Wilson today at 888-607-2621 to schedule service for your system. Regular maintenance helps prevent breakdowns and ensures that your system works at peak efficiency, saving you money on fuel. Tune-ups also extend the life of your system.

  2. Check to see that vents in the house allow air to flow.

    Your home’s vents make sure that the air inside your home can be circulated properly. Thermostats are set to specific settings to make sure that your home’s air is circulated and heated properly to keep your system working efficiently.

    If vents are not allowing air to flow because of an obstruction or clogged filters, your system will need to work extra hard to heat all the areas of your home evenly. This leads to even higher energy bills and more headaches from an easily solved problem. Simply examine your vents and ensure that air can pass through.

  3. Remove all flammable objects from around your heating system and water heater.

    This tip seems obvious, but can be very dangerous for your home. Make sure that paper products, boxes, aerosols, and other flammable products are kept away from your furnace and water heater, especially if your furnace and water heater are kept in a small room.

  4. Ask us to start making automatic deliveries.

    We calculate how much fuel you will use based on your past usage and on the weather — and then we schedule your deliveries in plenty of time before you run low. This will take some of the worry out of winter.

  5. Upgrade your burner.

    A new burner with electronic controls can pay for itself in just a few years because of lower costs. Less fuel will be used because modern burners will burn your fuel cleaner and operate as much as 15% more efficiently.

  6. Check that the exhaust flue to the outside is clear.

    Make sure there are no obstructions and everything is in good condition with all connections securely fastened.

    Keeping combustible gases out of your living space is essential to your home’s safety. Furnace rooms or closets should have door louvers or vents or a duct directly to the outside to provide sufficient combustion air.

  7. Set back and save.

    At an average cost of $350 (installed), a programmable thermostat is a great investment. You can automatically lower the temperature at night or during the day when the house is empty. You save 1% on your annual heating bill for each degree you dial down, as long as the setback period is at least 8 hours.

  8. Control heat output and save 10% or more.

    Modulating aquastats or outdoor reset controls can be added to your boiler system. These controls automatically adjust the boiler’s water temperature depending on the outdoor temperature. If it’s not cold outside, your boiler’s water doesn’t have to get as hot, which conserves fuel. There will also be less heat lost through the pipes when your boiler shuts off.

Contact us if you need more advice or help with saving money this winter!