Oct 2, 2009 8:16 PM by Matt Stafford

Getting Ready for Winter

     “It doesn't take much to start a fire,” says Pat Lemley, service manager for Affordable Plumbing and Heat.

     That's one of the bigger, but not the only problem, people see every year when they are ready to turn on their furnace.

     Lemley advises, ”That first cold snap, you should try to be a little bit more proactive and, before October gets here, start having that furnace cleaned and checked so you don't come across those issues.”

     Lemley says you should check your basics.  Only a few bucks on batteries in the thermostat and new filters for your furnace could save you an expensive house call you don't need, but he says you still may want a regular check up.

     ”A big thing is neglect.  People who do take care of their appliances once a year and have them cleaned are less likely (to have a problem) than somebody who goes every two or three years to have it cleaned.” Lemley says.  “It only takes one item in the furnace to not work and then you have no heat because it all works together.”

     It only takes a small problem to create a big one, like a crack in a heat exchanger.  Lemley warns, “Carbon monoxide will leak out into the residence and can make you very sick or even kill you.”

     “A hundred dollars is not much to put on anyone's life, a value to somebody's life, versus not having that service call have professional come out and check that.” says Lemley.

     A little preventive maintenance can go a long way, in your pocketbook and for your health.

-Thursday on News First Five we told you about dialing 2-1-1, which lets you talk to referral specialists who can get you connected with helpful community information.

-Also there’s the LEAP program, or Low-income Energy Assistance Program. LEAP offers partial assistance to those who qualify from November 1st until the end of April.

-For year-round assistance with heating costs, call Heat Help at 1-866-432-8435


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