It was a Sunday night, the house felt cold. The only way for the Doloski family to keep their Illinois house warm and cozy in December is to have a working furnace. One look at the thermostat told them that clearly, theirs was not.
Within minutes of arriving, the service technician diagnosed the problem. They needed a new igniter. At least, they concluded, the problem was one they could not have resolved themselves.
Then the technician opened the side panel of the furnace. Filthy. Neglected. The technician said the igniter failed because the furnace filter hadn’t been cleaned. What would have taken five minutes to vacuum, cost hundreds in “after hours” fees, parts and labor. They knew the furnace filter needed to be vacuumed and they do at the start of every winter, if not more often. But this year they simply forgot.
The Doloski’s are not alone when it comes to forgetting about routine maintenance issues. Take automobiles, for example. A National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) survey showed that while 48 percent of its certified technicians always tell customers about the importance of routine vehicle maintenance, only 2 percent routinely follow that advice.
If you own a home, a car or simply a human body, the words routine maintenance should be part of your vocabulary. Safety and good health are, of course, the most important reasons to keep what we’ve got in good working order. But the financial benefits are significant, too. Read more