A Specialist's View
The mechanical equipment in your home will run more efficiently and have fewer breakdowns when serviced annually. Your annual maintenance inspection will give you piece of mind and can also inform you about upcoming problems so you can have the opportunity to schedule your equipment upgrade instead of experiencing the inconvenience of it breaking down.
Common Furnace Failures
Dirty Air Filters
When the furnace is running in heating mode a dirty air filter will cause the furnace to run hot, which will create excess stress on heat exchangers, inducer motors, and the venting for the furnace, not to mention higher gas costs.
A dirty filter will also cause the blower motor to stress and lead to premature failure. All these items can be very costly repairs and have the potential to leave you with no heat.
Dirty Blower Wheel
A dirty blower wheel will produce similar effects on the furnace as a dirty filter with additional unwanted problems. A blower wheel that has too much dust and dirt built up on it will cause the blower wheel to become out of balance, which causes more stress on the bearings of the blower motor, shortening its life span.
Improper Gas Pressures
Furnaces are designed to have a predetermined temperature rise (generally between 30-80 degrees F) and are rated for a maximum discharge temperature (these specifications are unique to the brand of furnace installed).
A furnace unit is designed to put out only so much heat. If the unit has too high of a gas pressure, the efficiency will be drastically reduced (resulting in higher operating costs)and can cause a unit to over-fire and run too hot. On the other hand too low of a gas pressure can cause the unit to hesitate on start-up and some times not fire at all.
Dirty Heat Exchangers
Build up of dust and other impurities melting on to the heat exchanger will cause a burning smell similar to a hair dryer and if left too long will cause premature failure of the heat exchanger resulting in a need for a complete furnace replacement.
Holes/Cracks in the Heat Exchangers
One of the most serious issues as it not only leads to costly repairs but can lead to serious injuries. Carbon Monoxide poisoning can have deadly effects (children, the elderly, people with breathing problems and pregnant women are more likely to get sick from CO poisioning).
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide leaking into the residential space can be stinging eyes, headaches, nausea, vomiting, chest pain and confusion. More information about this deadly killer can be found on the Center for Disease Control Website.