Top 3 Winter HVAC Questions

Our customers often ask us great questions. This season, we’ve compiled three of the ones we’ve gotten most often. We hope they help you out this winter!

If you have a question you don’t see here? Take a peek at our full list of FAQs.

Or, just give us a call at 503-679-9276. We’re always here to help!

Question #1: Why is there a burning smell when I turn on my heat for the first time?

The smell of burning is never pleasant to encounter and it’s definitely something that can cause some worry. But the good news? Most of the time, a burning smell is caused by a build up of dust. When you’re turning on your heater for the first time, dust and debris has likely accumulated in the air ducts, heat exchangers, and other parts. The first time that you turn on the system, this debris burns off and you smell the resulting burning scent. Afterwards, you shouldn’t smell it again.

If the smell doesn’t go away? Or if you notice the smell after you’ve already been running the heat for a few weeks? Turn off your system and give us a call! Something else is going on.

Question #2: How often should I clean my home’s air vents?

It’s a good idea to clean air vents a few times a year. Dirty vents can negatively affect your system’s efficiency and longevity. Walk through your home and clean off any vents and registers. This way, dirt doesn’t get into the system and circulate throughout your living spaces. While you’re doing this, check that your vents aren’t being obstructed by anything. Move furniture or rugs that might be covering registers and open up any closed vents. (Closing vents can cause issues, like duct leaks and airflow problems.)

Question #3: How should I winterize my HVAC system?

This depends on the type of system you have but in general, there are some good practices to follow.

  • If you have a stand-alone air conditioning unit, you can clean away any loose sticks and debris and cover it with a tarp.
  • If you have a programmable thermostat, set it to a reasonable daytime and evening schedule.
  • Replace your air filters.
  • Shut down any outdoor pipes (if you’re unlikely to be use hoses during the winter!).
  • Call us to schedule a winter tune-up! An HVAC professional should inspect your system twice a year to keep your energy bills low and your system working efficiently. Plus, a well-maintained system will last longer and require fewer repairs during its lifetime.

Contact Comfort Heating & Cooling

For more tips, read “Get Your Home (and Your HVAC!) Ready For Winter” and “Our Top 5 Fall & Winter HVAC Tips.” If you’re looking for more tips and recommendations, contact our reliable technicians. We’ll assess your needs and your home and provide you with reliable, budget-friendly solutions. Call 503-679-9276 to schedule your heating consultation today with one of our certificated HVAC technicians.