This year, we might be getting an early start on a very cold and snow-flaky winter! According to the Canadian Farmers’ Almanac's distant predictions, Ontario is expected to experience colder than usual winter temperatures this year.
Included in their forecast is an extreme cold spell around mid-February, with temperatures that could drop as low as 40 degrees below zero.
While most of us hope that these predictions are wrong, or at the very least, over exaggerated; it would be wise to be prepared for this chilly forecast.
Right about now, you can begin winterizing your home for the cold season.
Since your furnace is at the heart of keeping your house warm, autumn (September, October) is the perfect time to schedule your annual furnace maintenance service.
Booking a yearly furnace tune-up with an HVAC professional ensures your family’s comfort and safety; as well as, supports the term of your furnace warranty or protection plan (if you have one).
If your furnace is a low to mid-efficiency, and over 15 years old, it’s probably time to replace it with a high-efficiency furnace (92+% efficiency). You don’t want your old furnace giving up on you on the coldest day of the year, during freezing temperatures.
If you require to replace your furnace, now is the best time to do it because of the residential HVAC rebate programs being offered to qualified homeowners. Find out if your home qualifies for rebates.
A new furnace installation saves you money from the get-go, while also giving you peace of mind.
For optimal furnace operation and to improve indoor air quality in your home, it is important to check your furnace air filter to see if it’s time to replace it with a new one. Typically, it is recommended to check your filter once a month (if it’s a 1” filter), or every 6 months to 1 year (if it’s a wider filter 4” or 5”).
Another source of heating is a fireplace. If you are currently using a gas fireplace or stove to heat your home, then the same advice applies. Ensure that your fireplace is inspected and serviced on a yearly-basis.
In addition to checking and maintaining your heating system, it is important to inspect your home ‘inside out’ for any damage or leaks that could cause heat to escape and for cold to enter.
Areas that you or a hired professional can inspect for damage or leaks:
• windows and doors
• ductwork seals
• attic insulation
• basement walls
• outdoor faucets
• roof and eavestroughs
Taking the above steps way ahead of winter will help you be better prepared, and it will empower you and your family to enjoy the season in comfort and well-being.
Written by Nicole Casati
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