It may still be wintertime, but you know as well as we do that warmer temperatures are right around the corner. Why you won’t be shutting down your furnace tomorrow, now is a good time to start making plans for the change of seasons.
We first recommend that you use this time to schedule air conditioning maintenance to ensure that your cooling system is in good shape and ready to keep you cool and comfortable. Our second recommendation is to not only shut your furnace off but all the way off.
You Probably Won’t Need Your Furnace This Summer!
Not all homes are built the same of course. There isn’t the same amount of insulation in every property, so it is possible that your home can get a bit drafty when temperatures are on the cooler side. Perhaps if you live in an older home with improper insulation you’ll use your furnace a little longer than your neighbors with better insulated homes.
Chances are, you are probably not going to need your furnace going into summer, though. The lowest our lows get during the summer are usually about 68°F. While that may be a bit chillier than we’d like, it’s going to get so much warmer throughout the day you probably won’t even think about your heating system.
Do You Have a Furnace with a Standing Pilot Light?
Some homeowners don’t see a need to shut down their furnaces for summer, and honestly, it can depend on what type of furnace you have. If you’re using a natural gas-powered furnace that uses a standing pilot light in order to ignite the burners, then we recommend that you shut it all the way off by turning off the gas to it. If you don’t do this, the pilot light will continue to burn through the summer, which is a waste of gas and has the potential to become a hazard, as well.
What if you have a furnace that uses an electronic ignition system? This is actually the norm for most modern furnace systems, and this means the system doesn’t consume any extra gas over the summer. It’s fine, in this case, to simply stop using the furnace if this is the case rather than shutting it off altogether. The only exception to this can be is if you plan to be away from your home for a week or longer—in this case, it’s a good idea to shut down your gas-powered appliances of any kind.
Keep in mind, if your furnace is completely powered by electricity, then you don’t need to worry about shutting it down for the summer. You can instead just stop using it for the season.
“What if I Have Repair Needs?”
As we reach the official end of winter, you will want to take care of any pending repair needs, especially if you plan on shutting the system down for the season. If you shut it down without addressing any repair needs it has, you could wind up with a broken-down system when you need it next fall. Or it could have been a repair need that will also impact your air conditioners, like ductwork or thermostat damage.