Furnace maintenance is important for keeping your home comfortable all year long. But when you’re in need of a repair, it pays to know how to keep your furnace running smoothly.
Check the Air Filter
A dirty air filter will cause your furnace to work harder than necessary, costing you more money in energy bills. To check your filter, open the access panel on the side of your furnace and remove the cover. Look at the top of the filter; if there’s any dust or debris stuck inside, clean it out with a vacuum cleaner. If the filter looks clogged, replace it.
Clean the Heat Exchanger
It’s also important to keep an eye on the heat exchanger. This part of the system is responsible for transferring heat from the combustion chamber to the outside air. If it gets too hot, it can melt and crack, causing expensive damage. Check the heat exchanger every month by opening the access panel on the back of the furnace and looking for cracks or other signs of damage. Replace the heat exchanger if it shows any signs of wear.
Inspect the Heater Core
A cracked heater core will cause the engine to run hotter than normal, increasing fuel consumption and reducing its lifespan. To check the condition of the heater core, open the access panel on the bottom of the furnace and remove the cover plate. Look for cracks or holes in the metal. If there are any, replace the entire heater core.
Replace the Thermostat
In addition to replacing the heater core, make sure to replace the thermostat as well. This part controls the temperature inside the home, so it should be replaced every three years.
Test the System
If you notice any issues with the furnace, such as low heat output, check the thermostat first. It may need to be reset. Next, check the air filter. Make sure there isn’t debris blocking airflow into the system. Finally, test the blower motor by turning it on and off several times. If it still doesn’t work properly, call an HVAC technician to inspect the unit.
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