Heating your way through winter

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – The weather is unseasonably warm Thursday, but soon those cold days will return. Those chilly days mean using your furnace to heat your home. If your furnace goes out, it means you’re left in the cold.

“In some cases if you have children during the summer they like to stick things in them,” Terry McCart, the President of Blue Dot said. “We have found toys and baseballs and all kinds of things.”

Terry McCart with Blue Dot said water and dust can lead to it shutting off as well. That’s why heating contractors say you should hire someone to make sure it works properly.

“Furnaces today are hi-tech and they really need someone who is experienced to look at them,” Terry McCart, the President of Blue Dot said.

But there are a few things you can do.

“Make sure there is nothing being stacked or stored that’s flammable around the furnace itself,” Greg Hunsicker, the Vice President of McElroy’s said.

Greg Hunsicker with McElroy’s has another tip. You should check vents and remove anything that is blocking air flow.

Home heating experts say that taking this dirty air filter out after 3 months of usage can save you money and keep your home well heated.

“If you are spending a dollar on heating and your furnace was operating at 50% then that means that 50 cents of that dollar was wasted,” McCart said.

But it isn’t just all about keeping your home warm, it’s about keeping the cold out.

“If you know your house is drafty figure out where those draft areas are,” Hunsicker said. “Try to seal those things up because the less outside air you allow into your house the better off you are.”

These simple things can keep you and your family warm this winter. Heating contractors say you should replace your furnace after 20 years. That’s when they lose efficiency and could cost you money. Some of that money could be spent in repairing it.

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