With the cold weather months knocking on our doors, a lot of us will be firing up the furnace for the first time in several months. When that happens, many homeowners in the area are going to notice things about their heating system that aren’t quite “right.”

While a yearly inspection of your heating system, along with the rest of your HVAC system, is highly recommended by heating professionals and furnace manufacturers, there are homeowners who decide against it for any number of reasons.

In the coming months, if you notice any of the following issues with your heating system, it’s a sure sign it’s time to call in the pros.

Increasing Bills:

Sure, energy bills can vary year to year, but if you notice a discrepancy from the last heating season — or over the previous month — there is a good change the efficiency of your system has plummeted. A small bump in your heating bill generally indicates increased usage, but a big bump can spell trouble.

Increasing Noise:

While furnaces aren’t known as the quietest operators, they should not wake up everyone in the house when they kick on. If you notice unusual or excessive noise coming from your furnace or ducts, it may be a sign that a fan, motor, belt, or any number of other components have gone bad.

Increasing Chill:

Say you have your home set to a warm 26 C, and yet, it doesn’t feel like it. So, you up your thermostat by another degree or two, but nothing changes. This can be a sign of a few different things. If the furnace seems to be operating, you may simply have blocked ducts. It’s also possible that the furnace is unable to produce heat like it used to. it may be an issue with a component or the unit may be on its last legs.