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December 6, 2022

The holiday season is upon us. While we would like to say that this a stress free time, we know that for most people, that is not the case. With so much happening and people in and out of your home, including yourself, the last thing you want to have to worry about is your home’s HVAC. We are going to review some holiday HVAC safety tips to help you ensure you and your guests are comfortable and able to enjoy the season uninterrupted, at least by your home’s heating and cooling system.

Holiday HVAC Safety Tips

The last thing anyone wants to add into the mix of an already busy time is a furnace breakdown or issue. In Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties most families and homeowners want to be able to enjoy this time of the year and it would be the worst time for a heater issue to arise. The good news is, you can keep you, your family, and your guests comfortable and safe by following some holiday HVAC safety tips we have outlined below.

Make sure the area around your heater is clear and clean (interior and exterior). With new elements and decorations being added into your home, it is important to remember to keep the area around your furnace clean. Make sure there is plenty of space around the area of your heater to avoid a fire risk. Don’t forget about the outdoor portion of your unit as well. Debris can make their way inside your outdoor unit and damage your system’s components and compromise its performance. Check your condenser and make sure that it’s clean and clear. Also, be sure to keep decorations clear of the condenser.

Don’t restrict access to your thermostat. While it’s fun to decorate for the season, keep your thermostat clear of any obstructions. If your thermostat is blocked, it can misread your home’s temperature and cause your HVAC system to function incorrectly, putting it at risk of uneven heating, or a potential breakdown.

Change your air filter. This is one of the most important holiday HVAC safety tips, because air filters filter your home’s air and keep dust and other debris from reaching your HVAC unit. Dirty, unchanged filters are a leading cause of issues with Marin, Sonoma, and Napa County HVAC systems. During the holiday season with more going on, your air filters are more likely to need to be replaced. Do it now, before you forget, and it is too late and a clogged filter causes issues for your HVAC system. Not only will a changed air filter improve the efficiency of your system, it will help you ensure you and your visitors are breathing clean filtered air.

Schedule HVAC maintenance. We know, the last thing you want to add to your list right now is having a HVAC professional in your home; however, trust us, if there is an undetected issue and they are able to identify and fix it before it is a much larger problem, you will be grateful. Scheduling regular system maintenance is the most effective way to enjoy uninterrupted indoor comfort. The majority of heating problems are caused by a lack of maintenance. Routine maintenance is the most important investment you can make for your heating system. Don’t let a malfunctioning HVAC system ruin this special season with your family and friends and have a Marin, Sonoma, and Napa County HVAC professional inspect, test, clean, and ensure that your unit is working in the best shape possible.

Enjoying this time of the year can be challenging enough with everything that you have going on in your busy life, so let Bragg Cooling, Heating & Plumbing help. Bragg Cooling, Heating & Plumbing is a full-service HVAC company that is licensed to solve all your furnace-related problems, including repair, replacement, maintenance, and safety inspection.

Following the above holiday HVAC safety tips is a good first step, and we are here to help with anything that you need. We offer fast, same-day service in Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties. Contact us today.


August 18, 2022

No one wants to think about the end of summer, but it will be here before we know it and when the autumn breezes begin to set in in the North Bay Area, many homeowners turn to their furnace for warmth. After sitting dormant for months, your heater could be faced with some problems. What if you can’t get your furnace to start running? What if you hear loud or unusual noises coming from your system? What if it’s making a strange smell? While you may only use your furnace for a short time each year, you want it to work without issue when you do. We are going to walk you through some tips for how to prepare your furnace for the fall.

How to Prepare Your Furnace for the Fall

Fall doesn’t begin for another month, but now is a great time to start getting ready for it. While we may not get as cold in Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties as other parts of the country, it can become rather chilly, especially at night, and you will want to make sure that your HVAC unit is ready for the heat to kick on when you need it to. Preparing your furnace for the fall isn’t much different than getting your HVAC ready for the other seasons; however, the changing seasons are always a good reminder for regular maintenance and upkeep.

Let’s review some things you should do to prepare your furnace for the fall and brisker days ahead.

  • Change Your Air Filter: Replacing your air filters regularly can have a large impact on the health and well-being of everyone in your home and is important and imperative to getting your HVAC system ready for the fall and all year round. Air filters do simply what the name implies, they filter your air. Air filters keep dust and pollen out and are also tasked with keeping larger particles and materials out of your HVAC system, in turn, saving your system from mutilation. Dirty, unchanged filters are a leading cause of issues with Marin, Sonoma, and Napa County HVAC systems. How often you should change your home’s air filter really varies by home. We recommend changing your air filters at least once a month, but there is no exact number of days in which you should change your filters, as each home is different and it depends on the strain you put on your filter, what particles are in the air, and also what type of filter you have.
  • Prepare Your Thermostat: Your thermostat is one of the key components to your home’s HVAC system and can make all the difference between your Novato, CA home maintaining its comfort level or not. There can be indications that your thermostat may need replaced, and checking for them before the cold weather sets in can help you avoid your HVAC system from malfunctioning, or not working at all. Regardless if you have a basic thermostat, programmable thermostat, or SMART thermostat, like all things, there could come a point where you need to make an upgrade. Autumn is a great time to replace the batteries in your thermostat, if yours is battery operated. Also, be sure to make sure you have yours set so that the heat will kick on if needed.
  • Annual Furnace Tune-up: If you really want to make sure your heat is ready for the fall and ensure it is in the best condition possible for the colder weather ahead, you should have it inspected by a HVAC professional. Furnace problems are often caused by lack of maintenance. While you may only use your furnace for a short time each year, regular system inspections and maintenance are crucial to ensuring your comfort come fall and winter. Annual inspections and tune ups help to prevent unexpected breakdowns, and also boosts your heater’s energy efficiency. Preventative HVAC maintenance can help you avoid future headaches and expenses.


As you begin to prepare your furnace for the fall, if you notice any issues or just want a professional to take a look at it, Bragg Plumbing & Heating can help. We offer annual maintenance agreements that include fall furnace tune ups. Contact us today to learn more about signing up for our maintenance program.

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