You might be reading this blog post title and wondering why we’re talking about furnace steps for spring and summer, but hear us out!
Homeowners often don’t realize this, but there are a number of easy ways to cut down on monthly and yearly energy costs, and one way is to either fully or at least partially shut down the furnace during the warmer spring and summer months.
What Does It Mean to Shut Down Your Furnace?
Perhaps you read this and thought to yourself, “okay, all I have to do is make sure my thermostat is not in heating mode anymore, right?” While that is keeping the furnace turned off, it’s not shutting down the furnace, and that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
When we suggest that you shut down your furnace once the warmer weather starts rolling in, we mean that you should cut off the gas line as well as electrical power to the furnace so it doesn’t accidentally waste any energy throughout the coming months.
How Your Furnace Might Use Energy During Summer
If you have a furnace that utilizes a pilot light to ignite the burners, then that pilot light can waste energy during the summer. You don’t need your furnace to turn on suddenly, so you don’t need to keep the pilot light burning gas throughout the warmer months. You can shut the valve located on the gas line to the furnace, and the pilot light will go out and stay out.
This can save approximately $50 a year, and while that doesn’t seem like much, it absolutely adds up over the furnace’s lifespan, and adds a layer of safety to your system too.
Even gas furnaces have electrical components in them, too. This includes sensors that can needlessly draw on power through the spring and summer months. We recommend that you shut down the electrical power to the furnace through the breaker panel. This will prevent your furnace from turning on automatically due to someone accidentally (or purposefully) adjusting the thermostat settings, or due to a brief cold snap.
The Partial Furnace Shutdown
So, what if you have a central air conditioning system as part of your HVAC system? If this is the case, you won’t want to turn off the electrical power to the furnace through the breaker. In a central system with a furnace and air conditioner, both systems use the same blower fan, electrical components, and are connected to the same electrical circuit. So turning off the electrical power will mean that you can’t use your air conditioner.
We still, however, recommend shutting off the gas power to the furnace.
Before Your Furnace Goes Into Hibernation…
If you have any questions about shutting down your furnace for the warmer season, we’re here to answer them. But remember too, it’s important that you take care of any repair needs you may have now. Ignoring furnace repairs at the end of the season could leave you with a broken-down system when you need it again next fall.