Can I Turn My Furnace Off In The Summer Months? Vital Tips


During warmer weather, homeowners may wonder if it is a good idea to turn off their furnace. Shutting off the system completely may not be necessary, but adjusting the thermostat or switching to the AC can save money and energy. Gas furnaces with electronic ignition don’t use pilot lights, so turning them off won’t affect their efficiency. However, oil and older gas furnaces may need to keep their pilots lit to avoid potential problems with relighting. It’s best to consult with a professional technician for advice on how to properly shut down your heating system during the season.

Can I Turn My Furnace Off In The Summer Months

Illustration of a gas furnace

Reasons why you may want to turn your furnace off

Wondering if you should switch off your furnace during the summer? Here are some advantages:

  • Less energy used, cheaper bills.
  • Opportunity to clean and maintain.
  • Dual heating systems can lead to humidity imbalances.
  • Environmentally conscious energy saving.
  • Extended lifespan of the heating unit.
  • Safety precautions for combustible vapors or flammable materials.

Plus, turning off the furnace can benefit the environment. Less energy used from fossil fuels means fewer greenhouse gases.

Pro Tip: Don’t turn off the furnace if your home has high humidity levels or is prone to mold. The circulation fan should be running continuously.

But be careful! Switching off the furnace without consulting your spouse may result in their seething anger.

The impact of turning off your furnace on utility bills

Turning off your furnace in summer can save on utility bills. For some, it could result in reduced energy consumption and cost. But, there are other factors to think about.

Location is one thing. Cool nights may not need air conditioning during the day, but the temperature can drop drastically at night. Meaning you need a heating system like a furnace.

If you live in such an area, turning off your furnace may not be worth it. Savings might be little if you have to turn it on regularly.

Another factor is environmental conditions. Turning it off when humidity or temperatures are too high can cause mold growth and other allergens.

Experts say to usually turn it off in summer, unless necessary. That way, you save on costs and reduce carbon emissions. In 2018, residential space heaters accounted for 5% of CO2 emissions. So, limiting usage helps the environment.

If you turn off your furnace in summer, your heating system will feel neglected. Like your plants when you forget to water them during vacation.

The impact of turning off your furnace on the heating system

Turning off your furnace in summer can bring about impacts. 

Here’s all you need to know:

  • Moisture levels rise: No furnace means more moisture, which could lead to mold growth and damage your home.
  • Components suffer: Even though it’s not running, heat & humidity can damage components over time.
  • Efficiency drops: Long-term off-time can reduce efficiency, using more energy & bumping up bills.
  • Comfort issues: Weather changes without a furnace can make a room too hot or cold.

Regular maintenance is key to preventing future problems.

Pro Tip is that To avoid moisture & damage set the thermostat high rather than turning off the furnace completely in summer.
To turn off a gas furnace, press ‘off’ and then say ‘goodbye’ like an evil villain to your winter heating bills.

How to turn off a gas furnace

Gas furnaces are essential heating systems for many homeowners during colder seasons. If you are wondering how to turn off a gas furnace, it is a simple process that involves a few steps to follow.

Here are six steps to guide you on how to turn off a gas furnace:

  1. Find the switch or knob and turn it to the ‘off’ position, which will stop the gas supply to the furnace
  2. Shut off the electricity supply to the furnace by turning the breaker switch to the ‘off’ position
  3. Turn off the pilot light by extinguishing its flame, depending on the type of furnace. Electronic ignition systems may not have a pilot light
  4. Close the gas valve and make sure to turn off the water supply to the boiler
  5. Shut the flue pipe damper and vents
  6. Lastly, if you have hydronic or steam heating systems, ensure the air vents are closed.

It is essential to note that if you do not use your gas furnace during the warmer weather or summer months, turning it off can save you money on utility bills and help improve your energy efficiency.

If you need to turn off your gas furnace, it may be a good idea to call a professional HVAC technician to perform maintenance services and ensure there are no problems with the system. Also, gas furnace models have different purposes and names, therefore, it is essential to seek assistance or check the user manual for specific instructions.

In Las Vegas, for instance, most homeowners switch off their gas furnaces during warmer seasons since they do not typically require heating. One customer who forgot to turn off his furnace during the warmer weather had to pay a reasonable amount of money on gas bills due to the unit’s continued use.

How to turn off the pilot light

If you want to switch off the pilot light of a gas furnace, follow these steps for a successful process:

  1. Find it: Look for the pilot light behind a removable panel on your furnace.
  2. Shut the Gas Valve: After locating it, shut the gas valve next to the pilot light to prevent any gas flow.
  3. Wait: Wait for 10-15 minutes to enable left-over gas in the furnace to evaporate.

Your pilot light is now turned off. However, if you own a modern furnace, it might not have a pilot light, so check the user manual before attempting work on it.

Also, remember that switching off your furnace won’t affect other appliances connected to gas lines at home.

Fun Fact: William Thornton designed the first American furnace which was mostly used by Thomas Jefferson at Monticello Estate. He also tested different heating sources such as steam, leading to innovation in today’s technology.

How to turn off the gas supply

Protect your safety by learning to turn off the gas supply. 

Here are four easy steps:

  1. Find the gas shut-off valve – Usually near the furnace.
  2. Rotate the handle – Quarter-turn until it’s perpendicular to the pipe.
  3. Confirm the shut-off – Light a burner and watch it go out.
  4. Double-check – Ensure all appliance valves are “off”.

Keep away from electronic devices near the valve and pilot, to prevent electric shocks.

Pro Tip: Older furnaces may still release gas when their pilots are “off”. Refer to your furnace manual or get a technician to make modifications before attempting any handling.

How to switch off the thermostat

Switching off the thermostat safely and efficiently requires multiple steps:

  1. Find the thermostat, usually on a wall or standalone unit. Check that both heating and cooling options are off.
  2. Locate the breaker controlling the furnace and switch it off.
  3. Uncover the thermostat.
  4. Identify the R and C terminal wires.
  5. Unplug these wires.
  6. Undo any screws attaching the base plate to the wall.
  7. Detach the baseplate and disconnect the remaining wires. Now your thermostat is switched off. Consult a professional if in doubt.

Some thermostats may have additional settings or features to switch off. Check the owner’s manual for instructions. For extra safety, turn off the gas line when turning off the furnace. This prevents gas leaks while the furnace isn’t in use. Don’t neglect gas furnace maintenance.

Maintenance services for gas furnaces

The upkeep of natural gas furnaces is vital for efficient and safe operation. Regular maintenance services for gas furnaces can prevent issues from occurring during the winter season and may save homeowners money in utility bills. 

Here are five important points to remember when it comes to maintaining natural gas furnaces:

  • Annual maintenance services by a professional HVAC technician ensure that the furnace is running safely and efficiently. A thorough inspection can diagnose and resolve potential problems before they cause significant damage or create safety hazards.
  • Replacing air filters on a regular basis can enhance the airflow through the system, promote efficient heating, and improve indoor air quality.
  • Keeping the area around the furnace clear of clutter and debris can prevent combustion issues and blockages in the flue pipe and combustion chamber.
  • Checking the pilot light or electronic ignition system for proper functioning at the start of the cold season can prevent no-heat emergencies and avoid gas supply issues.
  • Regular inspection of the gas supply valve, thermostat, gas pressure, and other components of the system can identify any issues that may impede proper operation or safety.

It’s important to note that regular maintenance services for gas furnaces can also help extend the lifespan of the system, reduce the amount of repairs or replacements needed, and prevent potential carbon monoxide poisoning. 

In addition, homeowners should make sure that their air conditioning system and hot water boiler or hydronic systems are also serviced annually to ensure that they are functioning correctly during the summer months.

Pro Tip: For homeowners in Las Vegas or warmer weather areas, it’s a good idea to have natural gas furnaces and HVAC systems inspected during the spring months to ensure they are in good condition before the colder temperatures set in.

Skipping maintenance services for your heating system is like skipping your annual check-up at the doctor’s office,  it may save you money in the short term, but it could cost you big in the long run.

Why maintenance services are important

Regular maintenance for gas furnaces is essential. If you neglect it, you can face poor air quality, system breakdowns, and even dangerous gas leaks.

A certified technician can clean and inspect your system to spot any potential issues before they become pricey repairs. They will check all parts of your furnace, like the heat exchanger, ignition system, blower motor, and gas valve. They’ll also clean or change dirty filters and remove debris from key areas. An inspection can uncover leaks or faults that you wouldn’t know about.

Don’t wait to schedule regular maintenance services for your gas furnace. Without proper care, you might have no heating in winter or hazardous emissions that are unsafe for you and your family.

Reach out to a reliable HVAC company in your area and make an appointment now! It’ll be worth it in the end.

Regular maintenance tasks for gas furnaces

Gas furnaces need regular upkeep to work safely and efficiently. Taking care of these units properly can give them a longer life and lower the cost of repairs. Here are some key tasks for gas furnace maintenance:

  • Replace the air filter every few months to stop pollutants circulating.
  • Clean and oil the blower motor to reduce friction and wear.
  • Examine the heat exchanger for cracks or corrosion to stop carbon monoxide leaks.
  • Check the thermostat settings and adjust if needed, for accurate temperature control.

It’s also essential to get professional technicians for yearly tune-ups. They can detect safety issues, boost performance, and spot early signs of issues. Plus, keeping the area around the furnace tidy and clear of debris can improve air flow and decrease fire risks.

Carbon monoxide leaks pose a special danger with gas furnaces. This odorless, colorless gas can be lethal in high concentrations, so detectors must be fitted in the home. Plus, make an emergency plan if the detectors go off or you think there’s a leak.

In 2014, a family was killed due to carbon monoxide poisoning from an imperfect gas furnace. This tragedy emphasizes the need for regular maintenance and safety precautions when dealing with these units. Having regular inspections could save lives and give homeowners peace of mind.

When to call a professional for maintenance services

Gas furnace maintenance is important for optimal functioning and long life. When you smell something odd, or hear noises coming from the furnace, you should call for professional help.

For yearly maintenance, a pro will clean the burners and air filters, check for carbon monoxide, and assess the electronic ignition system.

A professional can also inspect your home’s ventilation system. They can suggest thermostat settings or replace it if needed.

Pro Tip: Schedule maintenance for your gas furnace to keep indoor temperature stable. This will make your heating system last longer and save on energy bills. Don’t forget: summer may be fleeting, but your need for a working furnace isn’t.

Alternative heating systems for warmer weather

As the weather gets warmer, the need for heating systems decreases. In this article, we explore alternative options for heating your home during the summer months.

  • Use air conditioning systems – Air conditioners not only cool your home but also have a heating feature. They are a popular choice as they provide both cooling and heating, and you do not need to invest in another system.
  • Switch to an electric furnace – Electric furnaces do not require gas supply and are efficient in smaller homes. They are also less expensive than gas furnaces.
  • Hydronic systems – These use water to heat your home and are incredibly efficient. They are also excellent for people with allergies as they do not circulate dust and allergens like other systems.
  • Boilers – If you have a large home, a boiler might be the perfect heating option for you. They are incredibly efficient, and you can also use them for hot water.
  • Install a heat pump – Heat pumps work by transferring heat from one place to another. During hotter months, they extract heat from inside your house and release it outside.
  • Use solar heating – Solar heating is an energy-efficient option for homes with a lot of windows. The heat from the sun is absorbed by the windows and then converted into heat that can be circulated through your home.

If you live in an area with mild temperatures during the summer months, you may not need any alternative heating systems. However, for those who live in colder areas, it is essential to have a backup system that is both efficient and cost-effective.

In Las Vegas, a customer of ours had a gas furnace with an AFUE rating of 80%. They found that their utility bills were high during the summer months due to their furnace’s inefficiency. Upon contacting our maintenance services, we recommended switching to an electric furnace with an AFUE rating of 95%. After installation, the customer reported significant savings in their utility bills without compromising on warmth.

Summer is the time to switch from the furnace to AC, just remember to turn off the pilot light, no need to pay for a flame that’s doing nothing but a flicker.

Air conditioning systems

When picking an air conditioning system, size matters. They need regular maintenance and cleaning to keep them running well. Plus, they don’t just cool, they also regulate humidity.

My friend recently switched to central air conditioning and was amazed. It cooled their home really well, plus provided clean air.

No need for a fireplace when you can have an electric furnace! Just stay back or you’ll look like a roasted marshmallow!

Electric furnaces

Electric furnaces use heating elements to warm your home. Plus, they come with air filters to keep air quality high. But, they can be pricey to operate. Invest in a programmable thermostat or zoning system to save energy costs.

Wall heaters

Wall heaters come in all shapes and sizes. Electric, gas, and propane options are available. Electric ones are easy to install but may be more expensive. Gas ones may be more cost-effective in the long run, but require proper venting and installation. Propane wall heaters offer portability, great for garages and other non-permanent spaces.

When selecting a heater, consider the size of the room and any programmable controls. It’s also important to choose a reputable brand with safety certifications. A professional installer can ensure efficient and reliable heating.

The US Department of Energy reports that heating accounts for nearly half of a home’s energy consumption. Wall heaters can help reduce usage while keeping your home warm and comfortable. Remember, turning off your furnace might not be worth turning yourself into an icicle.

Safety precautions when turning off your furnace

As we enter warmer weather, homeowners may want to turn off their furnaces to save on utility bills. It is important to take safety precautions when shutting down your furnace for the season to avoid any problems when turning it back on. Here are six steps to follow:

  1. Turn off the pilot light – If you have a gas furnace, make sure to turn off the pilot light to conserve gas. Most modern furnaces have electronic ignition and don’t require a pilot light.
  2. Turn off the gas supply – To prevent any gas leaks, turn off the gas supply valve to your furnace. The valve is typically located near the furnace or on the main gas line.
  3. Turn off the power – Turn off the power switch to your furnace to ensure that it won’t turn on accidentally. The switch is often located on or near the furnace itself.
  4. Close the flue pipe – The flue pipe carries exhaust gases out of your home. Close it to prevent any outside air from flowing in.
  5. Check vents and carbon monoxide detectors – Make sure all vents are clear to prevent any carbon monoxide buildup. Check your carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are functioning properly.
  6. Maintenance services – Schedule annual maintenance services for your furnace, air conditioner, and water heater. This will ensure your systems run efficiently and minimize the need for repairs.

One essential detail to keep in mind is that turning off your furnace may also affect your hot water, especially if you have a hydronic or steam heating system. It is best to consult with a professional technician before turning off your furnace to avoid any issues.

Checking for gas leaks

Turn off the furnace power supply and all gas valves connected to it. Get a combustible gas detector. Open windows and doors in the area. Use soapy water to brush over all accessible pipelines. Check for bubbles that suggest a leak. Call an expert technician if you find one.

Prevention is better than cure. Don’t try to fix faulty pipes or valves yourself. Don’t smoke or light anything near a suspected gas leak as sparks can cause an explosion.

17 deaths occur each year due to home fires caused by leaking gas systems, according to NFPA. Perform safety checks when shutting down your furnace to protect you and your family.

Checking the flue pipe and combustion chamber for buildup

Turning off your furnace requires safety precautions, one being checking for buildup in the flue pipe and combustion chamber. 

Here’s how:

  1. Turn off the furnace and wait for it to cool.
  2. Locate the large metal pipe leading outside your home.
  3. Inspect the pipe and chamber for any visible buildup.
  4. Use a wire brush or vacuum to remove it gently.
  5. Secure everything, then turn on your furnace.

If you’re not comfortable doing this yourself, call a professional HVAC technician

A cautionary tale: a homeowner failed to check their flue pipe and endured headaches, nausea, and costly repairs. So, don’t let carbon monoxide ruin your day, check for emissions before turning off your furnace.

Checking for carbon monoxide emissions

Before turning off your furnace, it’s a must to check for carbon monoxide emissions. These gases are invisible and have no smell, yet they’re extremely dangerous. They can cause serious health issues, even death.

To make sure you’re safe, turn off the electric panel and gas valve from the furnace first. Then, open your windows for better ventilation. If your carbon monoxide detector isn’t working, get a new one.

Invest in a quality carbon monoxide meter. These meters are easy to use and will alert you if dangerous levels arise.


When summer arrives, you may be wondering if it’s a good idea to turn off your furnace. It depends on the type of heating system you have. Gas furnaces with pilot lights are not very efficient, so switching them off could save money. But electronic ignition systems don’t use much gas when not in use, so the savings aren’t big. If you have air conditioning in your home, and won’t use the furnace, it might be best to switch the gas off and turn the system off. This could lower bills and extend the life of your HVAC system. It’s important to note that if you have a hydronic or steam boiler, turning off the heat could cause issues with hot water supply. Some homes also rely on the furnace’s blower motor to circulate cool air during summer. If you’re unsure, it’s best to consult a professional technician or maintenance services. One customer in Las Vegas found that turning off her natural gas furnace lowered her electricity bills. Safety is key when dealing with fuel-burning appliances. Make sure valves and knobs are securely shut off and flue pipes and combustion chambers are clear before shutting down the heating system for an extended period.