When the heat goes out, your first thought most likely isn’t about who you’re going to call – it’s about the hit to your pocketbook that you already expect. Many people assume when there’s a problem, it’s permanent, leading to unnecessary replacement. An assumption like that when your system breaks down can be the biggest mistake you make when needing heating repair.
Read on to discover a few other common homeowner assumptions to avoid:
Assuming something’s broken
It makes sense to think there’s a big problem if one of the largest pieces of equipment in your home stops working, but quite often, the culprit is as simple as a bundle of leaves in an exhaust pipe or a blown fuse.
Before calling a repairman, check your intake and exhaust valves for blockages, make sure your filter’s been changed recently, check to make sure your unit’s doors are completely closed and double-check the thermostat. All of these things can prevent your heat from flowing.
Assuming you need a professional to fix whatever’s wrong
If none of those issues are at play, you may simply need a system reset. While the directions for your unit should be found inside its access panel, it’s common to have to cut power to the unit, shut off gas flow, and wait a few minutes before turning the gas and power back on. It’s the HVAC equivalent of “Have you turned it off and turned it back on again?” Just like computers, this simple process has a tendency to work wonders – although a repairman may be better suited to do it if you don’t have much experience working with HVAC equipment.
Assuming you need a new furnace.
A new, energy efficient furnace is great for utility bills, and they often get subsidized by state governments wanting to promote Energy Star initiatives. Your HVAC provider can give you more information on new units if you want one. However, quite often, all you need is the repair or replacement of a few parts to get back up and running.
A reputable business will let you know the difference, but there are people out there determined to get the most money they can out of their clients. If a technician gets pushy, it’s time to call in a second opinion.