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Tips For Furnace Maintenance

As always most furnace manufactures and heating contractors will recommend having your home furnace checked by a qualified service technician prior to each heating season. A qualified hvac service man will have the experience and proper test interments to check things that you as a home owner may not, there for if you can afford it I agree this should be done.

This article is simply some tips that your average home owner can do to prevent problems though out the heating season. Any time your dealing with a furnace and natural or propane gas extreme caution must be taken. One important thing to remember is not to do anything to your furnace unless you have the power and gas shut off to it. Testing the furnace while it is running should only be done by qualified heating service technician.

First and the most apparent is replacing the air filter. I recommend using a quality pleated type filter. You may have to cross the type of filter you have to find a equivalent replacement. Most type of filters should at least be inspected monthly, some higher quality filters may last much longer depending on the type of atmosphere and the type of filter.

All high efficiency furnaces will have some type of drain trap and drain hose. Blockage in the furnaces drain system is one of the more common reasons for no heat calls. Try to remove and clean the drain trap and blow out all drain lines. House hold bleach can be poured through the drain lines to kill bacteria that will grow into a slime and restrict condensate flow.

Inspect the intake and exhaust pvc furnace pipes out side the house to be sure trees and shrubs have not over grown into them. If possible remove the air intake and exhaust pipe at the furnace and check for leaves or other things that may have gotten into these pipes. This is another very common problem that occurs in many heating systems.

Visually inspect wire connections for being lose or shorted. Inspect factory plug harness connections to be sure they are securely plugged together. You can vacuum out the inside burner and blower compartments to prevent this dirt from getting into your burners and blower motor. Some blower motors require oiling and some do not. Oiling both sides of the blower motor may need to be done by a technician as the blower assembly typically needs to be removed.

As far as cleaning the burners and inspecting the heat exchanger I again recommend having a qualified service technician do this. You will also want to have him clean the flame sensor. Many people mistake the Igniter for the flame sensor and end up breaking it. Your service technician should also check safeties such as limit controls and pressure switches.

There may not seem like a lot you can do your self but being educated on your heating system may save you a service call some day. When you do have a technician at your home be sure and ask as many questions about your system as possible. Knowing how your system is supposed to function may keep you from having to call someone next time there is a problem.

Information by Terry Manlick at HVAC Maintenance & Supplies

This artical and other hvac maintenace related articals can be read at HVAC Maintenance & Supplies. HVAC Maintenance related products such as air filters,V-belts, humidifier filters and coil cleaners can be purchased online at

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