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Serving The Chicagoland Area Since 1998


ServiceMax Blog

Check Your Gas Furnace before Winter

The most important way to check up on your home’s gas furnace to make sure that it’s ready to handle another tough Illinois winter is to schedule professional maintenance. Our regular maintenance program is an easy way to take care of this each and every year.

If you’ve already had your heating maintenance appointment, we still recommend that you make a check on your furnace a few weeks afterward, right before the major cold strikes. It’s simply good planning, and you can never be too sure about your furnace!

What to Look for When Checking the Furnace

To make a check on the gas furnace, let it run for about an hour on a day when the temperature is cool, but not to the point you would need the furnace for comfort. Walk around the rooms and also spend some time by the furnace cabinet. Here are signs to watch out for:

  • Gas odors: Natural gas has an additive placed in it to make it easier to detect should it leak. If you smell a rotten egg odor coming from the furnace, shut the system off and call for repairs.
  • Odd sounds from the cabinet: These sounds could be rattling, clicking, booming, or grinding. If it isn’t something you expect to hear when the furnace is running, or it’s louder than usual, it’s something to have a professional look into.
  • Burning odors: This is common right when a furnace comes on after a long dormant period: it’s the smell of the dust along the heat exchanger burning off. But if you’ve already run the furnace at least once in the fall, and it’s already had maintenance, this smell can mean a motor that is running too hot.
  • Cool spots in the house: The reason you should run a furnace check on a cooler day is to make it easier to detect which rooms are not receiving the level of warmth they should. These “cold spots” are warnings that the furnace is struggling to deliver even heating it should, and can point to a number of problems.

Malek Heating & Cooling has served Winnetka, IL and the rest of Chicagoland since 1998. When you need furnace repairs, we’re here for you!

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