Furnace cleaning is often left to professional HVAC technicians as there are numerous parts within a furnace that require delicate work. Cleaning and maintenance of a furnace is not a common skill, and takes trained individuals to accomplish efficiently and safely.
However, there are a few components of the furnace that you can clean at home to upkeep the heating system, and maintain a well-working furnace all year long. Doing the furnace cleaning before the heating season is a good idea as it will prepare the HVAC system for the cold, winter nights.
In this guide, we'll walk you through the cleaning and maintenance process of your furnace, including the different components of the system, such as the furnace filter, heat exchanger, flame sensor, blower motor, and more.
Effects of an Unmaintained HVAC Furnace
- Improper/inadequate heating system;
- Excess soot production;
- Filthy blower door;
How to Clean a Furnace: A Step-by-step Guide
Step 1: Power Off the System
First, shut the furnace off from its power source. Make sure the fuel shutoff valve is set to block fuel from getting into your electric or gas furnace. This will prevent unwanted accidents, and will make the cleaning process safer for you to accomplish. Don a pair of gloves, and other safety gear such as goggles, dust mask, and protective wear.
Step 2: Clean the Combustion Chamber
Clean the combustion chamber. To do this, open the panel that directs to the combustion chamber, and use a wire brush to loosen the dust. Vacuum inside the combustion chamber, and use the brush attachment to scrape away any soot, dust, and grime.
The combustion chamber is where air heats up, and fuel is ignited. This area can get particularly hot, so let the chamber and hot surface igniter cool down before cleaning them. Take precautions not to use excessive pressure when cleaning as the different components can be easily broken.
Clean the furnace doors as well as the fan blades of the blower motor, the incoming gas pipe, and the gas valve when cleaning your furnace. Brush out any soot and grime that you can reach, and vacuum them up using a shop vac for optimal suction power. Brush the dust away from dirty burners, and clean the blower assembly by wiping down each part.
Step 3: Clean or Replace the Air Filter
Next, clean your reusable air filter, or replace a disposable filter. Do the same to the oil filter. For reusable air filters, vacuum up the dust surrounding the mesh, then clean the furnace filter with soap and water. For disposable filters, check your user's manual to know the right time to change the old filter. You can also use the vacuum cleaner to remove dust without getting the filter wet.
Step 4: Inspect the Pipes
Inspect the pipes for any signs of leakage, corrosion, or damage. Check the furnace filters for holes or weak spots. Repair any faults in the HVAC system, or contact one of our trained technicians at Luce Aircon to diagnose and repair your unit for you.
Step 5: Adjust the Heating System
Adjust and prepare the system for the heating season. Check if your gas furnace has enough fuel supply, and use a lightweight machine oil to lubricate squeaking or rusted hinges. DIY furnace maintenance can be done at home as long as you have basic knowledge of the furnace and its parts, which you can find in your user's manual.
Step 6: Clean the Vents
Finally, clean the heating ducts. Use a shop vac to remove the dirt from the air conditioning ducts, and clean the vent covers by scrubbing them with soap and water. Let the vent covers dry before placing them back onto the furnace.
Doing furnace cleaning and maintenance is no small feat as these heating systems often loop around the house, and go through the ductwork. Having our professional technicians do the work will not only save you time and effort, but also costs on repairing broken parts as we can find and reinforce weak points before they become problems.
Make your winters stress-free, cozy, and warm with Luce Aircon. Let us handle all your air conditioning needs, while you sit back and enjoy the warmth and comfort of your freshly-cleaned furnace!
Contact us today to get started on cleaning your HVAC systems!