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Maintaining home heat difficult during cold weather

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YAKIMA, Wash.--The extended period of below freezing temperatures is making heating systems work harder than normal and many aren't keeping homes warm.

"I would love to find more technicians you know because we are extremely busy," said Paul Wyatt, owner of One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning.

He's no stranger to the calls of broken down home heating systems.

His staff has been working around the clock, tending to residents who need repairs on their heat sources.

He says doing routine maintenance yourself can help prevent home heaters from failing.

"When you have a heat pump, keep the snow cleared from it and if you have a gas furnace make sure you have it checked for carbon monoxide and keep your filters changed," said Wyatt.

The broken gas furnace at Martha King's home is an example of what Wyatt faces on a daily basis.

King has been renting the home for the past 10 years. It's the first time the furnace is having problems.

High levels of carbon monoxide were discovered, forcing Wyatt to shut it down for the time being.

King and her husband are relying on space heaters to keep warm but it's less than ideal.

In the future, having the professionals fix the furnace seems like the best solution for her.

"Call him back and tell him to come back. Just watch it that's all you can do and I think he just said that it wasn't very promising for fixing this heater," said King.

And while it does cost money to have maintenance done on your heater, Wyatt says the long term benefits far outweigh the costs.

"It saves money on the utility bills. It makes the system run safer and you're just not going to have the breakdowns," said Wyatt.

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According to One Hour Heating and A.C., maintaining your home heating system costs around $200 while a full repair can cost anywhere between $300 to $500.

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