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Your gas or oil furnace needs to be inspected, too!

When the temperature drops, it’s easy to flip the thermostat switch and enjoy the warm air that comes flowing automatically through the vent. But just like your fireplace and chimney, your oil or gas stove requires annual cleaning and maintenance to keep it running safely and efficiently. Neglecting your heating system can result in a variety of problems and dangers, including carbon monoxide poisoning, decreased indoor air quality, inconsistent temperatures throughout your home, and furnace breakdowns.

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Because of those dangers, a variety of groups, including the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Fire Protection Association, and the American Lung Association recommend having your furnace cleaned and inspected by an HVAC professional or chimney sweep annually. The good news is that an annual cleaning and inspection performed by an experienced professional can keep your furnace running smoothly for 15 to 20 years!

Your annual furnace maintenance

While their burning byproducts are different, gas and oil furnaces generally require the same types of annual maintenance. When you call in a service professional, you can expect them to follow these steps when cleaning your gas or oil furnace:

  • Combustion chamber sweeping. Your furnace expert will sweep the soot attached to the walls in your furnace’s combustion chamber, then vacuum the loose pieces of soot away. While the types of chemicals that build up on the chamber walls vary for an oil and gas furnace, in both types of furnaces, those chemicals are highly corrosive and can cause damage to your combustion chamber, which can allow carbon monoxide to leak out.
  • Flue pipe inspection. Tiny holes that form in your chimney’s flue pipe can allow carbon monoxide to flow out of your furnace and into your home. Your furnace professional will examine your flue for any such holes, which usually can be patched. He also will check the flue’s air flow, as an improper air flow can compromise the efficiency of your furnace.
  • Oil filter replacement. As with your car, an oil furnace requires an oil filter to prevent impurities in the oil from flowing through your system and causing problems down the line. That filter needs to be replaced annually to ensure the oil making its way into your chimney is free from damaging impurities.
  • Air filter replacement. Your furnaces air filter helps clean the air your furnace pumps through your home. Your air filter needs to be replaced at least once a year to make sure your home’s air stays cleaned. Removing the filter also allows your furnace technician to inspect your furnace blower’s belts.
  • Burner adjustment. Your furnace technician should finish his annual cleaning by measuring gases in the flue’s exhaust to make sure it is pumping through the proper amount of fuel per oxygen. At this point, the oil nozzle should be replaced. The furnace is lit and the flame is checked to make sure the flame color and shape are ideal. A gas furnace should have its burner tubes vacuumed and cleaned.

Call Guaranteed Chimney Service

If your gas or oil furnace is overdue for a cleaning and inspection, call the experts at Guaranteed Chimney Service. We may be “The Chimney Guy,” but we service furnaces, too!

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