Make sure your heating system is maintained regularly to keep you warm all winter.

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A cat sleeps on a blanket-covered chaise in front of a radiator.

Getting Ready for Heating Season

There’s a chill in the air, and while many hardy Minnesotans will resist turning on the heat for a little longer, it’s undeniable that heating season is arriving soon. That means it’s also time for some annual maintenance. To make sure you have heat when you need it, it’s recommended to have your furnace or boiler tuned up yearly. It might seem like a service you can skip, but annual inspections can help prevent bigger (more expensive) problems down the road, identify potential safety hazards, and even save you money by keeping your system operating efficiently.

What you need to do to start up your system will depend on what type of heat your home uses:

Furnace (forced air)

• Schedule a furnace tune-up and inspection in the fall.
• Change the filter at least every three months, or monthly.
• Duct cleaning? According to the EPA, cleaning ducts doesn’t necessarily impact health. Your furnace filter should capture particles. Time to clean is when there is evidence of mold, rodent or insect infestation, or full-on clogs.

Boiler (radiators)

• Have a boiler tune-up performed by a professional.
• If your model calls for it, oil the water pump.
• Check water pressure and bleed air from the radiators.

Heat Pump

• Maintain every year if using year round, or every other year if using for one season (heating or cooling.)
• Clean or change filters monthly.
• Remove leaves, weeds, or other debris from around the outdoor portion of the unit.

Heat pump condensers By Kristoferb at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10795550

Electric Heat: (baseboard, in-floor)

• Make sure furniture and curtains are a safe distance from baseboard units.
• Clean to remove dust and dirt.

an electric baseboard heater and thermostat

If you find that it’s time for a new heating system (most have a life expectancy average of 15 years), NeighborWorks Home Partners offers affordable home improvement financing. Contact us to see what is available for your home.

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