Reading through an article from Divine Caroline, I found 7 tips to help save money on heating this winter. Who doesn’t want to save money, especially during the holiday months.
1. Replace all your filters. In addition to not being as effective at filtering the air you breathe, dirty filters cause several problems for the furnace. They make the blower work harder getting enough air into the heat-exchange chamber so that you have enough warm air in the house.
2. Clean the area around the furnace and inside the filter box. While you are replacing the air filters, vacuum around the furnace unit. Most furnaces are stuck in an out-of-the-way spot and get minimal cleaning during the year.
3. Check your fan belts. Fan belts that are too loose or too tight can cause problems with the blower and the fan motor. The tension in the belts should be set so there is about 1” of deflection at the center of the span.
4. Lubricate the blower (fan) motor shaft. Most electrical motor shafts have lubrication ports at one or both ends of the shaft that runs through the motor. Use a good quality, lightweight motor oil to fill these lubrication ports.
5. Check to be sure the blower (fan) cage spins easily. Check your blower (fan) cage by spinning it. As long as it spins easily, everything is fine. If it seems to rub or bind while it spins, you could have something stuck in the fan or you could have a worn out fan.
6. Turn on the pilot light. Most gas furnaces require a pilot light to function properly (some of the more modern furnaces have electronic flame starters). Make sure your pilot light is lit.
7. Check your thermostat. After you have done the mechanical maintenance on the furnace and made sure the pilot light is lit and working, check the thermostat to make sure that it is working. Set your thermostat control to ‘Heat’ and the furnace temperature control to higher than your current room temperature. Make sure the burner lights and the fan starts blowing. As soon as you have done this you can turn the furnace thermostat control back to a cooler setting and the status control back to either cool or neutral.
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