5 Seasonal Home Furnace Maintenance Tips

When the temperature starts to drop outside and you find yourself needing to put on a jacket, these are clear indicators that cooler weather is on its way. Thankfully, if you have a furnace in your home, you will be able to stay nice and cozy no matter how chilly it might be.

In preparation for the winter weather, here are five seasonal home furnace maintenance tips. By implementing these, you can be certain that your furnace will remain in optimal condition all winter long.

Turn off the gas and electricity to the furnace. Before you get to working on your furnace, the first thing that you need to do is make sure that the power is off, along with the fuel. In most cases, there is a switch on the side of the unit. If you don’t see one, you may want to check your electrical service panel and then cut off the appropriate breaker. As far as the gas line, it should be connected to the furnace inside of the black pipe. Once you locate it, look for a valve and then turn it to where it is perpendicular to your gas line.

Vacuum the inside of the furnace. When everything is turned off, the next thing that you need to do is open up the furnace’s door so that you can vacuum the interior of it. The thing to keep in mind is that you will need to have some kind of snorkel attachment in order to get to all of the hard to reach spots. As you’re vacuuming, don’t forget to clean out the base of the furnace along with the gas burners.

Change the air filter. If you look over the filter inside of your furnace, there’s a pretty good chance that it’s going to show signs of it needing to be changed; especially if you are cleaning your furnace during the peak of the winter season. In fact, according to most furnace technicians, it’s a good idea to change your furnace’s filter once a month when it’s cold outside.

Check the fan belt. Something what helps to drive the blower of your furnace is its fan belt. And just like fan belts on cars can get loose over time, so can your furnace’s. So, as you’re looking it over, check to see if there is any cracking or other signs of wear and tear. You should also make sure that the belt still has some tension. You can check this by gently pushing down on the center of the belt. If it happens to deflect more than half to three-fourths of an inch, you need to tighten the belt up just a bit.

Lubricate oil bearings. If you recently read an article about theĀ difference between single and two stage furnace and within the piece it provided some maintenance tips, one of the things that it might mention is if you have an older furnace, something else that you will need to do is lubricate its bearings. You can do this by finding the oiling caps and applying some lightweight household oil to them. Once you are done, you can then replace the furnace’s cover and turn your furnace back on. Do take note that you might need to relight the pilot to get the furnace up and running again. For tips on how to do that, visit Home.HowStuffWorks.com and put “light furnace pilot” in the search field.

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