Cleaning your furnace is the great DIY project. Many people are intimidated by furnace maintenance because they think that the electrical and gas components are complicated and dangerous to work with. However, as long as you take a few simple precautions and properly shut down your system before working on it, cleaning your furnace is very safe and easy.
Shutting Down and Opening Up Your Furnace
It is important that you shut down your furnace in the correct order. First, make sure your thermostat is turned to the off position. Next, open up the furnace. Most furnaces have an access panel that can be removed without any tools. Some panels have a kill switch that will automatically shut down the power to the furnace once the panel is removed. If not, you should first find the gas knob and turn it off. It should be clearly marked. Once the gas is off, you we'll need to cut the power to the unit for some extra safety. Most furnaces don't have a power switch, so you will need to find the breaker. Once the power, gas and thermostat are all turned off, you can safely work on the inside of your furnace cabinet.
Cleaning Inside Your Furnace
You can start off by simply vacuuming out the bottom and inside walls of your furnace cabinet. There are a few special components that you should pay special attention to. The furnace pump can often have dust buildup within the vents. Suck this dust out using a hose vacuum.
You can also check the status of your furnace filter. Most furnace filters are quite large and easy to find. It might be within a small slot that it slides into. If so, pull the filter out and take a look at it. If there is a lot of dust buildup on the ridges, you should just replace it completely. Trying to clean your furnace filter always worth it. It is fuzzy so that dust sticks very well to it. It is usually easier to just replace the filter completely. Furnace filters are cheap and found at most home improvement stores.
You should also check for any blockages where the ducts are connected to the side of your furnace cabinet. This is a critical juncture because this is where air starts to flow into your duct system. If there are any blockages, you can have serious airflow problems. Contact a company like Always Ready Repair for more tips.