Learn how to stay safe and warm this winter
The weather’s getting colder in the greater Seattle area. That means many people are getting out their heavy blankets or turning on their furnaces, gas fireplaces, or space heaters for the first time. With the holidays approaching, now is an ideal time to prepare for the winter season by checking on your Seattle furnace.
Problems with your home’s heating system can lead to fires, which is why it’s important to check if your furnace is safe to use, especially during the day when nobody’s at home. After several months of not using their furnaces, many Seattle homeowners are simply unaware if their furnaces are functioning properly. A furnace could spark a fire in a matter of minutes unless you follow certain precautions.
Keeping Your Furnace Clean
Many Seattle homeowners fire up their heating systems without cleaning them. Dust that builds up in the vents and glass is highly flammable. Vacuum and clean regularly around your furnace to prevent the build-up of dust and lint. You should also avoid storing anything near gas appliances that could interfere with airflow. If you have a forced-air unit, check its filter monthly during periods of use and clean it or replace it, if necessary.
The Importance of Routine maintenance
Have your Seattle heating system checked out by a qualified technician every year. An HVAC technician will ensure that the wiring is attached properly and that it isn’t burnt or frayed on the inside. Having your home’s heating system serviced and inspected can also make it run more safely and efficiently. In addition, change the batteries in your home’s smoke alarms to ensure that they’re working properly.
Another thing that Seattle homeowners need to be aware of is carbon monoxide poisoning. A dysfunctional furnace may emit carbon monoxide, which is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is formed when carbon-based fuels are burned with inadequate amounts of oxygen. If you don’t have a carbon monoxide detector, remember to leave your house immediately for fresh air when you feel lightheaded and nauseous for no apparent reason. It’s also important to have a plan for evacuating your home in case there is ever a fire.
If you use a space heater, make sure that it is at least three feet away from flammable items, such as sofas, clothing, sheets, and curtains. Additionally, make sure your space heater shuts off automatically if someone bumps into it. You should also avoid using an extension cord with space heaters because of the extreme amount of wattage they carry and the amount of amperage they use. Numerous house fires have been caused by space heaters that were plugged into extension cords.
If your Seattle home has a gas fireplace, make sure that the damper is open when you use it. According to firefighters, you should avoid throwing any materials like wood and paper into a gas fireplace because it can overheat the firebox and cause a fire.
Find Out If Your Seattle Furnace Is Up to Safety Standards
Keeping your Seattle heating system in good working order is essential to ensuring that it runs safely and efficiently all winter. Have your Seattle heating system serviced and inspected by the furnace experts at MM Comfort Systems. We’ve been serving Washington’s greater Seattle and Tacoma areas since 1977. Give us a call at 425.533.9058 or fill out our online contact form to set up an appointment.