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Touchstone Heating & Air Inc. Blog

How Heating Maintenance Improves Your Winter Safety—Even in Florida


Each fall, we make it a point to remind our customers to schedule heater maintenance in Wellborn, FL and elsewhere in North Central Florida. It’s easy for people who live in a warm climate to let their home heating needs slip past. There simply isn’t the same urgency in Florida when it comes to winter as there is in a place like Wisconsin. But heating maintenance is still important in our region, and that’s why we make a bit of noise to ensure the homeowners know it’s the time of year to get their heating maintenance appointment on the calendar before the winter.

There are several reasons why these annual inspections and tune-ups for home heating systems are important, even in the Sunshine State. Maintenance ensures the best performance from a heater when necessary, lowers the occurrence of malfunctions, and keeps energy efficiency high. But even without those factors, there’s an important reason to always have heating maintenance … and that’s safety.

Maintenance looks after home safety

You don’t have to worry that the heating system in your house is some sort of lethal ticking time bomb. HVAC manufacturers build heating systems with numerous safety precautions so that they’ll work with little chance of hazards as long as they are properly maintained.

Now read over that last part again: as long as they are properly maintained. Any heating system needs professional maintenance annually to keep it running within the margins of safety it was manufactured for. Neglecting maintenance can mean a heater that moves into hazardous territory.

For example, the gas furnace

We’ll look at the most prominent example of heating maintenance keeping a home safer: the gas furnace. This is the most common type of heating system found in homes, and also the system most in need of routine maintenance to ensure it runs well for many years. Combusting natural gas can carry risks with it because of carbon monoxide leaks and the possibility of fires. Maintenance targets all potential gas furnace dangers. Technicians carefully inspect the furnace to look for these possible hazards:

  • Cracks in the heat exchanger. This is one of the more common sources of carbon monoxide leaks in an older furnace.
  • Poor venting. A blocked flue can cause exhaust gasses to flow out of the furnace rather than out of the house.
  • Problems with the gas line, such as blockage or leaks.
  • Broken gas valves.
  • Faults in the electronic ignition system and the flame sensor.
  • Faults in other safety mechanisms such as the flame roll-out switch and the furnace limit switch.

In addition to these inspections, technicians also conduct a combustion test to see if that the furnace is properly burning natural gas and not producing an excess of CO and other harmful byproducts.

Other heating systems

What if you have an electric furnace or a heat pump? Do they still pose any dangers? These systems do have fewer potential problems because they don’t combust gas or create harmful emissions. However, as powerful electrical components, they need regular inspections to ensure their wiring isn’t deteriorating, which can create fire hazards, or is in danger of shorting out the electrical system

Heating maintenance is easy to schedule: all you have to do is sign up for our Gold Club Maintenance Plan and we’ll take care of you.

Call Touchstone Heating and Air 24/7 for exceptional customer service! Serving the communities of North Central Florida since 1998.

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