Keeping the Heat On

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WILKES-BARRE -- As temperatures continue to drop, you may be turning your heat up. But after last year's mild winter, your heating system might not be up to the task, and could use some maintenance.

These below freezing temperatures aren't going anywhere anytime soon, so you may want to make sure your heating system can handle it.

It`s something that you don't normally think about, checking your heating system.  Some people don`t realize it until it's too late and the bills are too high.

Jack Bellas with C.W. Schultz & Son in Wilkes-Barre says with such a mild winter last year many people didn't have their heating systems serviced. But with this year's cold weather, they may run into some major issues.

"Very similar year last year. It looks like we're going to have another week or two of cold weather, so we're probably going to have an increase of no heat calls, frozen pipes, things like that," said General Manager Jack Bellas of C.W. Schultz & Son Inc.

Technician Peter Melnyk says proper maintenance is vital for your heating system run efficiently and there are some things that you can do on your own to prevent a huge expense.

"If you have forced hot air change your filters. That's always a good thing to do, change your filters. If you have steam, flush your low water cut off every week, you know it only takes a couple of minutes and it keeps your unit clean and it keeps you from having to call us to come out," said heating technician Peter Melnyk.

Every technician who responds to a service call has a certain check list to follow whether it be gas, oil or coal.

For most routine check ups the technicians will use a special analyzer to make sure oxygen levels are where they should be.

While Peter Melnyk was checking the combustion of a hot water gas boiler, the company received three more service calls.

Thankfully when Newswatch 16 arrived at the house on Diamond street in Hanover Township the problem was simply an over filled water boiler, which was fixed pretty quickly.

But to prevent bigger problems all techs here say preventative maintenance is a must.

"Preventative maintenance for 100 to 120 dollars a season is definitely its weight in gold. You know that can save you a 300-600 dollar emergency call that can happen after hours. So I'm definitely a believer in routine maintenance," Bellas Added.

Temperatures are expected to drop into the single digits over the next couple nights, so you will definitely want that heating system to work right.