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Even when the mercury is rising with Canadian temperatures reaching an average of 26°C, we still use hot water for cleaning and bathing in our homes, which means regular maintenance and upkeep.
While it might seem odd to consider in the height of summer, your hot water heating system still requires maintenance to ensure that it is fully functional, no matter the weather. Doing so also helps to ensure a regular supply of hot water for when the seasons change once more.
Different heaters require different kinds of maintenance. If you are unfamiliar with yours, ask your local heating specialist (for residents in the province of Ontario, Ottawa hot water heaters can help). There are two main types: conventional water heaters (large tanks designed to store a specific amount of hot water for use throughout the day), and slightly more compact, energy efficient tankless water heaters which heat water on demand as it flows through the unit.
Some people might consider turning their furnaces off in summer to save energy, but when the water inside a furnace dips to basement temperature, this can cause the rubber gaskets inside to contract, creating leakages.
For the most part, these tend to reseal once the furnace is turned back on in fall, but soot mixing with condensation can lead to premature rusting, shortening the lifespan of your furnace.
Besides this, furnaces switch off and on less often than in winter, and only for a short time to moderate temperature inside the unit. Since this uses a negligible amount of oil anyway, you are unlikely to save a great deal of energy or money by turning it off altogether.
If the unit is not regularly maintained, checked and cleaned, dust can settle on internal electrical components, leading to problems with mechanisms inside the unit causing it to malfunction, and in some cases, this can be dangerous.
This can lead to expensive repairs and inconvenience further on in the year. Rather than ignoring your heater throughout the summer, call in a professional to ensure it is clean and in good condition.
Even if you have no prior issues with your heating system, a few regular checks can help to extend its lifespan while maintaining optimal efficiency. However, it’s not necessarily a good idea to do these yourself.
Inspecting and maintaining heaters frequently involves working with water, electricity and gas, all of which are potentially hazardous. Contacting a licensed expert is the best way to ensure that the job is done properly and nothing is missed.
As any Canadian knows, it’s never too early to start preparing for the season ahead. It might be difficult to imagine now, but once those temperatures begin to dip, the prospect of a faulty heating system is less than desirable.
The best time to call in a technician is in August: close enough to the beginning of fall, but not too late. A hot water and heating specialist will be able to make a complete assessment of your unit to ensure it is fully functioning and ready to go once the cold weather arrives.