What you should know before turning on your furnace

It’s the news many are dreading. Cooler weather is making its way to the Wabash Valley, with low’s expecting to drop to the 30’s this weekend.

You may be considering turning on your furnace for the first time this season.

John Bays has been fixing furnaces for thirty years, and he is already gearing up for the frigid winter months.

“We’ve even had a couple of no heat calls already when we hit the fifties,” said Bays, Owner of Bays Heating and Cooling in Terre Haute.

Unfortunately, it will only get worse; with cold weather quickly approaching bays has some tips for homeowners.

“Before it really gets cold they ought to turn it on a couple of times and make sure it will get your house to temperature.”

But before cranking the heat make sure you change the filter.

On a standard furnace it’s a task that should be done at least once a month.

“The worst thing it can do on a gas furnace is actually bust the heat exchanger which is the heart and soul of the furnace,” said Bays.

When in doubt call a technician.

“Gas is even more critical than electric to make sure that it’s burning correctly, and the other thing is to make sure it’s completely safe for your family.”

It’s this time of year when the fire department also reports an increase in calls.

“Some dangers are gas leaks in your furnace, and fireplaces. Make sure the chimney is cleaned out because they have a lot of build up that could cause a fire too,” said Jeff Fisher, with the Terre Haute Fire Department.

Fisher said the best way to prevent falling victim to carbon monoxide poisoning is simple.

“I recommend that everybody have a carbon monoxide detector in their house.”

It’s all part of a routine that will save you money while ensuring your safety.

“A little thing as simple as a plugged filter, a real minor problem when it gets cold and is running a lot can turn into something major,” said Bays.

It is recommended you have a technician look at your furnace at least once a year.