Richard checks for holes in the exhaust flue that could leak carbon monoxide, particularly where the pipe meets the furnace. Small holes can be patched with foil tape, but corroded flues must be replaced. He also adjusts the flue pipe's barometric damper, which moderates the chimney draw. "A big, tall chimney in an old house tends to suck too much air, compromising efficiency," he says. "Your service pro can weight the damper to lessen the draw.
Your HVAC system is an important appliance with a limited lifetime. Depending on use, with regular maintenance you can expect your furnace and air conditioner to last between 8-18 years before you will need to replace the old one. However, poor maintenance is one of the primary reasons for early replacement HVAC systems ahead of end of average life expectancy.
You can usually slip the belt on the motor’s (smaller) pulley first and then start it on the blower pulley. Rotate the blower pulley by hand, holding the belt in place but keeping your fingers from getting caught between the belt and the pulley. The belt should slip right into place. If it seems to be too tight or difficult to set in place, it may be necessary to adjust the motor mount to provide more slack.
This type of furnace is fueled by liquid propane gas, which is burned to push hot air through your home. A pilot light ignites the burners within a combustion chamber, which push heat into the heat exchanger and eventually through your entire home. Repairing this type of furnace can be more expensive than its electric alternative. For example here are some common propane gas repairs and their costs:
BGE HOME HVAC repair technicians are thoroughly trained and certified to work on all major brands of heating and air conditioning equipment. When your system breaks down and needs a heating and air conditioning repair, you want to call someone you can trust. Need air conditioning service in the middle of the night? Emergency heating and cooling HVAC service is available 24 hours a day by calling 888-243-4663.
Inspect your furnace thermostat by first making sure that it’s turned on. Also, ensure that the thermostat switch is turned to “heat” and not “cool”. If your furnace will still not start with the thermostat on, try adjusting the temperature settings to a few degrees higher. Inspect any visible wires for breaks or splits, and make sure your thermostat batteries are not dead. Do not touch any open wires; contact a professional.
We asked This Old House plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey to show us the proper steps that a service professional would follow for an oil-burning forced-air furnace; the basics on a gas system are similar. In both, fuel is mixed with air and ignited, heating a sealed chamber. Fresh, filtered air then blows across the outside of the hot chamber and into the heating ducts. (Homes with radiators have boilers instead of furnaces. These heat water instead of air, but the annual checkup is similar.) In all, the dangerous exhaust from the combustion chamber is vented out a flue or chimney.
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