Posted on: 26 April 2016
As time goes by, your furnace is bound to become a little less efficient. Simple components like the fan, filtering system, air registers, ducts, condenser coils and the evaporator can become less efficient over the years. Luckily, most of these simple things can be easily serviced to improve their efficiency. This article explains how you can increase the efficiency of your furnace by cleaning out the fan in the blower compartment. This is a simple job, but you need to take certain safety precautions whenever working on a furnace.
Turning Off the Power
The first thing you need to do before working on your fan is to turn off the power and the pilot light to your furnace. Most furnaces don't have a power switch, so you need to cut the power at the breaker. To turn off the pilot light, you first need to open the main furnace cabinet. The pilot is usually in the same compartment as the fan and it has a simple switch.
Cleaning the Blower Compartment
Once the pilot light and the power to the furnace are turned off, you can start the cleaning process. All you really need to effectively clean out the blower compartment is a hose vacuum and a few wet rags. Use the vacuum first to try and suck up any loose dust or dirt within the compartment. A hose vacuum with a brush attachment works the best. Use it to get all of the dust off the fan blades, and be sure to clean all the way to the back of the compartment. Along the back wall of most furnaces is the output vent that leads to the duct system. Make sure this area is especially clean.
There is bound to be dust and dirt inside the furnace compartment that won't come off with the vacuum. This is why you need to have some wet rags to wipe down the compartment. Pay special attention to the fan blades, the fan column and the filter holder. Remove the filter from the holder and inspect it to see if there is an abnormal amount of dust buildup. If your filter is blackened and caked up with dust, you should just replace it completely. Otherwise, just vacuum out the filter holder and then put the filter back in place.
At this point, you can close up your blower compartment and turn the pilot light and power back on. As an extra safety precaution, it is a good idea to run your furnace really quick to make sure that everything sounds okay.
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