Replace or clean
your furnace filter. You should replace or clean your furnace filter(s)
three or four times yearly. This is a quick, easy job every homeowner or
tenant can do. A new filter makes your furnace more energy-efficient and
saves money, too.
A furnace that is
not running at peak performance can be deadly. Carbon Monoxide is a natural
product of incomplete combustion. Virtually every gas furnace produces some
Carbon Monoxide, which is usually carried away from your home through the
furnace's venting. A clean, efficiently burning gas furnace produces very
small amounts of carbon monoxide, while a dirty, inefficiently burning one
can produce deadly amounts. Carbon Monoxide is odorless and colorless. It
causes flu-like symptoms, disorientation, confusion, and even death.
It is highly
recommended that you have your furnace cleaned and checked every year. The
older the furnace, the more important this service is. Newer gas furnaces
are equipped with many features that shut the furnace off when a problem is
detected. Older furnaces have no such devices. Over time, furnaces can
develop small cracks in the combustion chamber. These cracks may not be
visible to the naked eye. It is through these cracks that Carbon Monoxide
can leak into your home.
It is also
important to change your furnace filter regularly. The filter usually is
found just inside the front cover of the furnace. It may have its own access
door on the front of the furnace. A clean filter will help your furnace
burn more efficiently, and will help keep dust from being circulated through
Keep the area around your furnace clean and unobstructed.
Keep the burner area of your furnace clean.
Furnaces that require lubrication on the motors and bearings should be attended to by a qualified heating technician once a year.
Do not have anything combustible within six inches of your vent pipe.
Do not close off more than 20% of the registers in your house. This can
cause high resistance and unnecessary heat build up in the furnace.
Do not store combustible material such as paint thinners, gasoline, etc.
near your furnace.