SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – With the freezing temperatures continuing in New Jersey, experts state that several key factors play an important role in maintaining a warm and safe home throughout the long, cold winter. 

“Maintenance is key when it comes to your home running safely and efficiently,” said Mike Iarrapino, owner of Edison Heating and Cooling. “Ensuring that your home is air tight and that your heating system is working efficiently are so important.”

To keep your furnace running properly, Iarrapino suggests proper maintenance such as changing air filters, checking all safety devices, electrical connections, and humidifiers (if applicable) and other steps offered by Edison Heating and Cooling as part of its 21-point tune-up. For hot air systems that includes cleaning the flame sensor, lubricating motors, checking air flow, etc. and, for those with hydraulic (boiler) systems, technicians will also check backflow preventers, water feeders, circular pumps and chimney drafts, he added.

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“The chimney is critical," said Iarrapino. "Our technicians will check that the flue passages are clear, that no leaves or sticks are stuck, and that there is a good draft. That is so important. If you don't have a good draft in your chimney carbon monoxide can come back into your house.”

Iarrapino recommends changing all filters every other month and advises homeowners to also install battery-operated or electrical carbon monoxide detectors in all living spaces and near bedrooms. Additionally, he suggests insulating pipes located in crawl spaces or mechanical rooms with self-regulated electric heat tape to protect against the cold and wind. 

According to Iarrapino, thermostats should be set to a temperature homeowners are comfortable with.

“Most people keep it at 70 [degrees]; if you are someone who likes it warmer in the home, you may run it at 75,” he said. “Raising the temperature causes the unit to work longer and harder. That results in more wear and tear and shortens the lifespan of the unit while also raising your bills.”

When leaving the home unattended for an extended period of time during the winter months, Iarrapino suggests setting the thermostat at 50 degrees. Doing so "provides adequate freeze protection if the temperatures drop or the units breaks down while you are away," he said.

According to Iarrapino, following these steps while also ensuring that homes are air-sealed against the cold can help keep heating and electric bills in check during the winter months.

“Ensure that your windows and doors have proper gasketing and that they are closed and air tight really makes a difference,” he said. “The more air tight you make the home, the warmer and more efficient it is going to be.”

Edison Heating and Cooling, located at 191 Vineyard Road in Edison, is a full-service residential, commercial and industrial HVAC company with more than 120 employees and an 84-vehicle fleet. All of Edison’s technicians are trained, certified, licensed and full-time employee—not sub-contractors—and the company provides installation, repair and maintenance of heating and cooling systems, generators, air cleaners, humidifiers and dehumidifiers, boilers, water heaters, zoning systems and chimney liners as well as oil-to-gas conversion.

Edison Heating and Cooling services Bergen, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Somerset and Union counties, and also offers financing and 24-hour emergency assistance seven days a week year-round.

Non-emergency hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays until 5 p.m.  

New and returning customers interested in scheduling a service call or routine maintenance appointment should call (732) 372-7161. Additional information, along with coupons for current promotions, can be found online at www.edisonhvac.com.