Tips for Maintaining a Furnace
Maintaining a furnace is an important part of taking care of your home. These tips and web extras provide information on the types of filters available and the best ways to keep a furnace in check.
Maintaining a Furnace
- Check to make sure the pilot light is burning. Some furnace units must be lit by hand if the pilot light goes out.
- Follow the instructions for relighting usually printed on access doors. If you have difficulty relighting the pilot light, call a qualified heating contractor for advice.
- Check the blower and vacuum out and dust or debris in and around the unit. Check or replace the filter every 30 days. A dirty air filter clogs the air flow and it can overwork the equipment.
- Lubricate the blower motor.
- Remove the flame shield and check the burner for corrosion. Check flames with the fan off and on to conform to proper operation.
- Check the flue for gaps or dents and make sure it is venting properly to the outdoors.
- Vacuum all the dust from the air registers around the house.
- Check motion and make sure they are clear of furniture rugs, drapes, etc. to let the air flow freely.
- Spun Fiberglass Filters are the least expensive, disposable filters. They don't, however, adequately filter out finer particles.
- Pleated Disposable Filters are more costly but will provide four to eight times the filtering capability of the spun fiberglass filters.
- Washable Electrostatic Filters have a high initial cost but they are re-useable and offer much higher filtration rates.
- Electric Filters and Mass Media Filters offer superior filtration but they require modification to the ductwork for installation. But note that installing these types of filters is not a do-it-yourself project; they should be professionally installed.
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Home heating systems that aren't properly maintained may be less than 50 percent efficient. Learn more about the importance of periodic furnace maintenance.
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