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How To Inspect A Furnace Before Buying A Home in 2024

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Furnaces, Home Comfort, HVAC, Indoor Air Quality

Purchasing a home in Alberta can be a whirlwind experience, so it’s important to not neglect one of the most important features of any new home, the furnace. In today’s blog our Home Comfort Advisors will walk you through the DIY inspection process, and what questions to ask as you view your potential home, as well as when to schedule professional inspections, and what you can expect when you book in with Action Furnace.


Posted by Ryan | May 6, 2024

Purchasing a home in Alberta can be a whirlwind experience. The increased demand has resulted in higher bids, quicker possession dates, and most concerning of all, the waving of inspections.

Home inspections are a crucial step to ensuring your potential home’s heating system is in good shape, because the state of your furnace can greatly affect not only your comfort, but your wallet down the road.

In today’s blog our Home Comfort Advisors will walk you through the DIY inspection process, and what questions to ask as you view your potential home; as well as, when to schedule professional inspections, and what you can expect when you book in with Action Furnace.

At Action Furnace we strongly believe in the importance of furnace inspections so you can better understand how to evaluate your furnace’s condition, efficiency, and any potential issues before you sign on the dotted line. Let’s begin.

The Types Of Furnaces

Before we dive into inspections, it’s important to be familiar with the types of forced-air furnaces you may find when viewing potential homes here in Alberta. All forced-air furnaces operate basically the same. A fuel-source heats the air and a blower moves the heated air throughout your home through a series of ducts and vents. Here are some of the most common types:

Natural Gas Furnaces

Natural gas furnaces are the most popular type of forced-air furnace in Alberta. Modern natural gas furnaces are extremely efficient, and have longer lifespans (up to 15-20 years) depending on how well they are maintained.

Oil Furnaces

Oil furnaces are typically found in rural properties that don’t have access to natural gas. They are long-lasting and produce heat fast.

Electric Furnaces

Electric furnaces utilize electric heating elements rather than natural gas to promote heat. While a relatively inexpensive option to install, electric furnaces can quickly drive up your utility bills making it a more expensive option further on down the line.

Propane Furnaces

Like oil furnaces, propane units are usually found in rural areas where there isn’t access to natural gas lines. Modern models are becoming more and more efficient and have the same lifespan as natural gas models when properly installed and maintained. To learn more about the different types of furnaces available in Alberta, call one of our friendly Home Comfort Advisors today!

The Importance of Inspections

Furnace inspections are an important part of annual maintenance, but they are even more important when you are purchasing a new home. Here are just some of the reasons why you shouldn’t skip out on a furnace inspection.


Furnace inspections can detect cracks in the body or connecting lines of the furnace which could lead to carbon monoxide leaks and poisoning. Inspections can also uncover faulty components which could become a fire hazard.

Efficiency & Cost Savings

Regular inspections and maintenance can save you money by ensuring all internal and external furnace components are running efficiently. An efficient furnace is a long-lasting furnace because the unit doesn’t have to work as hard to heat your new home.


Inspections can ensure that your new furnace is capable of reaching and maintaining your desired temperature settings, which leads to more sustained comfort and indoor air quality.

Insurance Considerations

Certain home insurance policies require homeowners to conduct regular maintenance of their heating systems to keep the policy valid. A furnace inspection can be a part of this requirement, so it’s important to be familiar with your insurance policy.

DIY Inspections

Did you know that when viewing new homes, you can conduct DIY furnace inspections?

Go into the mechanical room. Is the area around the furnace clear? Look for signs of external damage and if there is a sticker or label that indicates the efficiency rating, the age of the furnace and the last time it was serviced. This can be a key indicator of how well this furnace has been maintained.

If the furnace isn’t easily accessible, it’s also important to ask your realtor the following questions about the furnace:

  • What fuel-type is the furnace?
  • How old is the furnace?
  • When was the last time the furnace was serviced?
  • Is the furnace still under warranty?
  • What is the energy efficiency rating of the furnace?
  • Has the furnace been appropriately sized for the home?
  • Does the furnace require special air filters?
  • Have there been any recent repairs done to the furnace?
  • Is the duct work in good condition?

Asking just some of these questions will not only give you a more clear picture of the furnace’s condition. The information will also help you make a more informed decision about the purchase, and prepare for any immediate repairs or other investments into the heating system (like duct cleaning or a whole new furnace) you might need to make.

While not as comprehensive as professional inspections, taking the above steps can still provide you with valuable intel before you make an offer.

Be Better Prepared With Furnace Inspections From Action Furnace

When it comes to your potential home’s heating system, trust the professionals at Action Furnace.

Our experienced heating technicians are highly trained and qualified to ensure you get the best out of your new home’s heating system. During your furnace inspection, we will do a complete check of all components including:

  • Ventilation System.
  • Mechanical Room.
  • Thermostat Operation.
  • How Water Heater Operation & Spillage.
  • Wiring Systems.
  • Heat Exchanger.
  • Gas Lines & Valves.

Once you’re settled into your new home. Call and inquire about Action Furnace’s Total Comfort Club Membership to help make furnace install, repairs and annual maintenance easier. For one low monthly price your annual maintenance will be prescheduled. You’ll receive an annual WOW! tune-up and duct cleaning with unlimited vents. You’ll also receive an annual supply of standard furnace filters. Plus you’ll enjoy front-of-the-line priority service, and 10% off future furnace repairs. Contact us today to learn more!

Our team has been performing HVAC services since 1975, so you can trust we have the experience to get the job done right. With thousands of 5-star reviews and comprehensive, up-front quotes, you can trust us to handle your air conditioner repair professionally, and be transparent about the work involved.

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Written by Ryan Tutak

Ryan is considered one of Calgary's most knowledgeable residential HVAC specialists. Working in the industry for over 12 years, he's helped thousands of homeowners with their heating and cooling systems. Outside of running Calgary's most reputable HVAC business, you can find him on the Golf course practicing his short game or traveling with his family. His main goal is to create a positive collaborative culture, one in which his employees are excited to come in and are motivated to work hard. He spends the majority of his day working directly with Home Comfort Advisors, Service and Maintenance Technicians, and Customer Service Representatives ensuring they are fully prepared to lead the Home Service Industry in Customer Service.

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