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Extreme Cold HVAC Tips
Posted: December 28, 2017 by Andy

When the thermometer bottoms out, it's essential that you take action to keep your furnace running well and keeping you warm!

Tip #1: Drop your thermostat setting

We recommend lowering your thermostat from where you normally prefer it by around 3-5 degrees. A slightly lower setting allows your furnace not to work quite as hard as it currently does to keep your home warm. The average household typically maintains a temperature setting from the high 60's to low 70's - reducing your thermostat setting by a few degrees will be a mostly unnoticeable change that will help keep your system running well and likely extend its life.

Tip #2: Check your furnace filter

Just a reminder - no matter what time of the year it is, you should be replacing your furnace filter at least once a month to prevent a buildup of debris and, as a result, making your furnace run harder than necessary. That said, during extremely frigid weather, your furnace will run longer than usual, which could cause more debris than usual to build up in your filter. You might want to replace your furnace filter more often during extended cold-weather periods. We highly recommend monitoring your furnace filter often to make sure that it isn't dirty or clogged during long stretches of extremely cold temperatures.

Tip #3: Keep all vents clear

It's crucial to understand how your furnace is vented. A 90% efficiency furnace is a great example. These high-efficiency systems are typically vented through PVC pipe where it exits your home outside above ground level. Check the pipe area regularly and ensure that it is clear of snow and ice; otherwise, buildup can block the exhaust and cause your furnace not to operate properly.

Tip #4: Your furnace may still not reach the set temperature

It's entirely possible that your furnace may not be able to raise your home's temperature to the setting on your thermostat. We'd like to advise you that if this occurs, bundle up and stay away from windows and doors, as the areas near them tend to be colder even when these portals are well-insulated. We recommend that you only use electric space heaters as a last resort as there are several safety concerns about their use. We do not recommend using fueled heaters indoors under any circumstances, due to the high risk of fire and carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. If your furnace is not heating adequately (or at all!), please contact us and we'll have you toasty warm again in no time!

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