Tips For Your Heating System During A Snowstorm

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Gina Napsin
Date
May 16, 2024
Theme
Heating & Cooling
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2921
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Heating systems provide several benefits during the winter or colder months. They help keep the inside of a building warm and comfortable, improving indoor air quality and overall health and well-being. They can also help to prevent damage to the building and its contents caused by freezing temperatures. Additionally, heaters can improve energy efficiency by reducing the need to use other heating methods, such as electric space heaters.
However, winter can be a difficult season for your heaters. With snow and extreme cold, keeping your home warm and your HVAC unit safely running can be hard. If you live in an area prone to snow storms, it is important to take extra care of them to ensure they stay safe and reliable.
This blog post will give you advice and tips on keeping your heaters operational during a snowstorm. We will also cover topics such as preparing your HVAC unit for the winter, several frequently asked questions, and much more.

Battling the Cold: 6 Best Practices for Keeping Your Heating System Operational During a Snowstorm

Winter is here, and with it comes the possibility of snow storms. These can be beautiful but can also cause problems for your home's heater. Here are a few useful tips to help keep it running smoothly during a snowstorm:
  1. Keep the thermostat set to a consistent temperature to prevent freezing pipes. Keeping your thermostat set to a consistent temperature is one of the most important things you can do to prevent freezing pipes during a snowstorm. When the temperature inside your home fluctuates, it can cause the pipes to expand and contract, leading to cracking and bursting. By keeping the thermostat set to a consistent temperature, you can prevent this from happening and ensure that your pipes remain in good condition.
  2. Clear any snow or debris away from the outdoor unit of your heating system to ensure proper airflow. Clearing snow and debris away from the outdoor unit of your heater is an important step in ensuring proper airflow and running it smoothly during a snowstorm. When snow and debris build up around the outdoor unit, it can restrict airflow and cause it to work harder than it needs to. It can lead to reduced efficiency, increased energy costs, and malfunctioning.
  3. Check your air filters and replace them if they are dirty. Checking and replacing your air filters is important in keeping your heater running smoothly during a snowstorm. Air filters are designed to remove dust, dirt, and other particles from the air circulated through your home. Over time, the filters can become clogged with these particles, which can reduce the efficiency of your heater and cause it to work harder than it needs to.
  4. Ensure all vents and registers inside your home are clear of furniture or other obstructions. Ensuring all vents and registers inside your home are clear of furniture or other obstructions is important in keeping your heater running efficiently during a blizzard. When vents and registers are blocked, it can restrict their airflow, causing them to work harder than needed. It can lead to reduced efficiency, increased energy costs, and even unit failure.
  5. If you have a gas heating system, ensure the pilot light is lit, and the gas is turned on. If you have a gas heating system, it is important to ensure that the pilot light is lit and that the gas is turned on during a blizzard. A pilot light is a small flame used to ignite the gas burner in your heater. If the pilot light goes out, it can prevent the gas burner from working, which can cause it to stop working.
  6. If you experience any issues with your heating system, contact a professional. If you experience any issues with your heating system during a blizzard, it is important to contact a professional for assistance. Attempting to fix the problem yourself can be dangerous, especially if you are not familiar with the inner workings of your heater. A professional heating and cooling technician can diagnose and fix the problem quickly and safely. They will have the tools and knowledge necessary to troubleshoot and repair it and can advise you on any steps you can take to prevent similar issues in the future.
Following these steps can help ensure your heater is working properly and your home stays warm during a snowstorm.

Understanding the Effects of Snow and Cold on Your Heating System

Snow and cold weather can significantly impact a heating system's performance. Here are a few ways that snow and cold can affect your heater:
  1. Frozen pipes: If the pipes in a heating system freeze, it can cause the unit to malfunction or stop working altogether. It can lead to costly repairs and downtime.
  2. Reduced efficiency: Cold temperatures can cause a heater to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature inside the building. It can lead to increased energy consumption and higher utility bills.
  3. Increased wear and tear: Snow and cold weather can cause additional wear and tear on a heater, leading to more frequent maintenance and repairs.
  4. Reduced airflow: Snow and ice can accumulate on outdoor HVAC units, reducing airflow and making it harder for them to function properly.
It's important to have your heating system serviced before the colder months to ensure it runs efficiently and minimize the risk of breakdowns. In addition, it's a good idea to protect your heater from snow and cold weather, such as insulating exposed pipes and keeping outdoor units clear of snow and ice.

Staying Ahead of the Cold Weather: Preparing for Unexpected Storms

As winter approaches, it's important to ensure your heating system is in good condition. Taking proactive steps can save money and keep your family warms all season long. Some ways to stay ahead of the cold weather include:
  • Scheduling regular maintenance: Regular maintenance can help ensure that your heater is in good working order and that any potential issues are caught early.
  • Insulating your home: Proper insulation can help keep the heat inside your home, reducing the workload on your unit and helping to lower your energy costs.
  • Sealing air leaks: Seal any leaks around your home to prevent cold air from entering and warm air from escaping.
  • Using a programmable thermostat: A programmable thermostat can help you set a consistent temperature in your home and reduce energy costs by allowing you to set the temperature to be lower when you're not home or when you're asleep.
  • Stocking up on emergency supplies: Having emergency supplies on hand, such as warm blankets, candles, and flashlights, can help you stay warm and comfortable in case of a power outage.
By staying ahead of the cold weather, you can help ensure that your heater is ready to go when you need it and that your home is as energy-efficient as possible. It's also important to have a plan in case of an emergency so that you can stay warm and comfortable in case of a power outage.

BONUS: Your Frequently Asked Questions - Answered!

Here are the four most frequently asked questions concerning your heater during a blizzard:
  • Can the snow cause the furnace not to work?
Yes, snow can cause a furnace not to work if it blocks the outdoor vents or causes freezing in the pipes or mechanical components. It's important to clear snow and debris around the outdoor unit and insulate the pipes to prevent such issues. It's also important to schedule regular maintenance and to keep the contact information of a professional heating and cooling technician on hand.
  • Should I turn off the heat pump in a snowstorm?
Turning off the heat pump during a snowstorm is unnecessary as long as you have cleared the outdoor unit of snow and debris and ensured proper airflow. However, if you are experiencing problems with your heat pump or are unsure how to proceed, it's best to contact a professional for advice.
  • Will the snow hurt my heat pump?
Heavy snow accumulation on or around the outdoor unit of a heat pump can cause damage to the unit, restrict airflow and cause freezing in pipes or mechanical components. It's important to clear snow and debris around the outdoor unit and install a cover to protect the unit from snow and ice. Regular maintenance can also help to prevent damage caused by snow and cold weather.
  • How do I protect my heat pump from the snow?
Protect your heat pump from snow by clearing the area around it, installing a cover over the unit, setting the thermostat to a low temperature when you're away, adding a heated enclosure, or placing it on a raised platform. Consult the manufacturer's instructions for additional tips.
  • Do I need to cover my heat pump in the winter?
Covering your heat pump in the winter is recommended to protect it from snow, ice, and debris. A cover can also help prevent animal damage and reduce energy consumption. Consult the manufacturer's instructions for specific recommendations and cover types.


It is easy to be caught off guard when a snowstorm takes you by surprise. With the increased demand for heating systems, it can be difficult to ensure your home is ready to face a cold winter. Want to know more? Then contact Home Alliance today! We have been in the industry for years, providing quality HVAC services. Contact us now.