It’s been a long, cold Minnesota winter, and the frigid temps aren’t going away anytime soon. While you naturally want to keep your home warm and comfortable this winter, it’s important that you do so safely. As such, there are a variety of safety tips that you should keep in mind. If you find that it’s difficult to keep your home or office warm this winter, it’s time to consult with an experienced Elk River, Minnesota, heating specialist.
Your Gas Furnace
A gas furnace provides your home or office with comfortable, reliable heat, and gas furnaces that are properly maintained are exceedingly safe. It’s important to recognize, however, that gas furnaces incorporate both fuel and flame, which means that safety hazards can potentially arise. When it comes to your gas furnace, regularly scheduled maintenance is key. Further, there are several steps you can take to help safeguard your home or office’s comfortable warmth:
- Consult with an experienced Elk River heating professional to ensure that your gas furnace is properly ventilated
- Change your gas furnace’s air filter regularly (your heating specialist will walk you through the process)
- Schedule regular maintenance for your gas furnace
- Keep the area around your gas furnace clean and clear
- Install carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home – including outside every bedroom – and test them annually
Your Electric Furnace
Electric furnaces are efficient, safe, and relatively low maintenance. While electric furnaces are typically a bit less energy efficient than gas furnaces, they pose very little – if any – risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. All told, your electric furnace needs basically the same safety regime and upkeep schedule that’s listed above for your gas furnace (minus the carbon monoxide detectors, which you should nevertheless have installed if you have any other gas-powered appliances).
Your Space Heaters
Many people find that space heaters are an economical and convenient way to keep their homes and offices cozy and comfortable. By allowing you to keep your thermostat set to a lower temperature, space heaters can help you conserve energy and reduce your utility bills – especially if you and your family tend to spend most of your time in one area of your home. It’s important to recognize, however, that space heaters are intended as a supplemental form of heat only, and using them otherwise isn’t advised. When it comes to space heaters, there are several safety tips to keep in mind:
- Plug your space heaters directly into outlets – don’t use extension cords
- Make sure the heaters are positioned securely on flat, level surfaces
- Keep space heaters away from wet/damp areas, including bathrooms
- Check your space heater for wear and tear, including fraying cords
Your Wood-burning Stove or Fireplace
Nothing cozies up your home more than a wood-burning stove and/or fireplace. Who doesn’t love pulling up closer to the fire on a blustery winter evening, but if your home has a wood-burning stove or fireplace, it’s important to understand the inherent potential dangers. Whether you heat your home entirely with a wood-burning stove or supplement the heat in your home with a wood-burning stove or fireplace, it’s important to carefully consider several safety concerns:
- Only burn dry, seasoned wood in your fireplace or wood-burning stove
- Never leave a fire unattended
- Implement regularly scheduled chimney maintenance and cleaning
- Refrain from burning garbage in your fireplace
- Carefully watch children around fireplaces and wood-burning stoves (or any heat-producing appliances)
- Keep flammable materials at least 3 feet away from wood-burning stoves or fireplaces
Your Home or Office
Minnesota winters aren’t for the faint of heart, and you naturally want to keep your home or office as comfortable as possible – while maximizing your energy efficiency and minimizing your utility expenses. The best way to effect all these goals is to consult with an experienced Elk River heating specialist. He or she will help ensure that you are heating your home or office safely, that you’re optimizing energy efficiency, and that you obtain the regularly scheduled maintenance you need.
Keep Your Home or Office Warm this Winter by Consulting with an Experienced Elk River, Minnesota, Heating Professional Today
It’s a Minnesota winter – you know the drill. It’s imperative that you keep your home or office consistently warm and comfortable without blowing your utilities budget. At Neighborhood Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning, and Electrical in Elk River, Minnesota, we understand your goals and we’re here to help. We proudly serve the Elk River area, and we’ve been doing it for over 70 years. Further, we’re there when you need us – morning, noon, or night (24/7 emergency service). If your heating system isn’t serving your needs, please contact or call us at 800-570-4328 for more information or to schedule an appointment today.