Getting Your Furnace Ready For Winter
While spring cleaning gets all the attention, some homeowners might be surprised to learn that winter cleaning is also one of the most important furnace services. Since you spend what seems like 95% of the winter months indoors, it’s important to vacuum the home of dust and debris every cycle of the furnace.
To ensure that your furnace runs as efficiently and safely as possible, most experts agree that you hire a professional to clean your furnace before the winter hits. Per the details of some manufacturer’s warranties, a scheduled furnace tune-up is necessary to maintain coverage. During this tune-up, HVAC personnel should clean the furnace itself as well as the duct work, vents, filters, etc.
Changing the air filter on the furnace is not only a part of the pre-winter checklist, it is something that needs attention at least once, but probably twice before spring returns. Changing the filter is one of the easiest furnace services as it only takes seconds but failing to do so results in poor air flow which raises the utility bills as well as impure air that causes illnesses.
Clean Combustion Chamber
To understand the combustion chamber of a furnace, think of a fireplace where air and flame mix to create soot, ash, water vapor, etc. In a furnace, this grime builds up on the walls of the combustion chamber which will eventually cause the walls to corrode. To clean out the combustion chamber take a wire brush to scrape the debris of the side walls and then follow back through with a vacuum to finish the job.
Clean the blower motor so that debris doesn’t get into the cracks of the component and restrict movement. Moreover, a clean blower motor prevents it from blowing air containing dirt, dander, insects and anything else that can build up in an idling furnace over the summer. Located behind an access panel, you use a small vacuum to suck clean the blower.
Clean Condensate Lines
When water builds up around the furnace it means that the condensation lines are likely clogged. Remove the tube and clear any blockage with a long thin object. Before reattaching the tube insert some anti-slime tablets into the opening to help prevent the blockage and future furnace services.
Clean and Lubricate all Moving Parts
With the access door still open locate any additional moving parts and clean them off with either a rag or a toothbrush. After cleaned lubricate the part with a small dab of some non-detergent motor oil to keep them running smoothly through the winter.
Clean Floor Vents
Toys, dirt, food, and a number of other items find their way into the floor vent openings so make sure to clean them out before starting up the furnace for the year. Subsequent to removing any potential blockages, take a vacuum and clean out as deep into the duct work as possible.
Cleaning may seem like one of the most remedial furnace services, but this simple exercise can save big money and health problems down the line.