At the end of the cold seasons, it is important to properly shut down your furnace to ensure it remains in good condition for the next heating season. This process involves taking a few important steps to protect the furnace from damage, prevent pests from nesting in the system, and ensure it is ready to go when cold weather returns.
Give The Furnace Enough Time To Cool Before Working On It
Before performing any maintenance on your furnace, it is essential to let it cool down completely. A furnace is a heat-producing machine, and many components, such as the heat exchanger, can get very hot during operation. You do not want to risk injury by touching hot parts, and giving the furnace at least a couple of hours to cool down before working on it is essential.
Cover The Flue And Intakes For The Furnace
During the offseason, one of the biggest concerns is the potential for pests and debris to create clogs in the furnace system. These can cause problems when you try to start the furnace back up in the fall, and they can even lead to system failures if left unaddressed.
Covering the flue and intake pipes for the furnace is one solution for stopping this problem. This will keep animals, leaves, and other debris from getting into the system and causing obstructions. You can use specialized covers or wrap the pipes in plastic sheeting and secure them with tape or zip ties.
Replace The Air Filter
Your furnace's air filter keeps dust and grime from getting inside and harming the system. When the furnace is not in use, mold can grow on the filter and cause problems when you start the system up again. Replacing the filter at the end of the season can stop mold from growing in the dust that has gotten on the filter.
Inspect The Furnace For Cracks
Cracks in the body or the furnace's heat exchanger can spell big trouble for the system. They can cause carbon monoxide leaks, reduce the furnace's efficiency, and even lead to fires. It is necessary to inspect the furnace for cracks at the end of the heating season to ensure it is in good condition.
When inspecting the furnace, start by visually checking the body and heat exchanger for any signs of damage or cracking. A flashlight makes it easy to examine the inside of the heat exchanger for signs of wear. If you notice any cracks, it is essential to have the furnace repaired or replaced before starting it up again in the fall. For more information, contact a heating contractor near you.