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How to Maintain Your Furnace Pump

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Your furnace is going to become less efficient over the years. You can minimize this inefficiency if you do your part to maintain the furnace. You don't need any special skills or HVAC experience to do basic furnace maintenance. The easiest maintenance jobs don't even require any special tools or training. This article explains how to service your furnace pump.

Getting What You Need for the Job

This maintenance does not require any special tools. You might need a screwdriver to remove your furnace access panel. However, most modern furnaces have panels that can be removed without any tools. You will need a hose vacuum in order to clean the furnace pump.

Shutting Down the Furnace So You Can Work on It

It is very important that you properly shut down your furnace before working on it. First, turn down your thermostat. Then, open the panel and find a gas control knob. Turn this knob to the "OFF" position. Once the gas is turned off, you need to cut the electricity to the furnace unit. Many people forget this step, since most furnaces don't have an on/off switch for the power. In order to fully cut the power, you need to find the breaker switch and turn it off.

Cleaning Your Furnace Pump

At this point it is finally safe to work on your furnace pump. The pump should be easy to identify. It is a small plastic box with wires leading into one end and fan vents on the other. One of the most common problems with a malfunctioning is that these vents get clogged with dirt. You might be tempted to try and wipe the dirt off with a wet rag. However, this will often just push the dirt into the vents and into the fan. You will have better luck if you just use a hose vacuum to suck the dust out. You shouldn't bother trying to open up the actual pump. Don't touch the screws unless you are a professional HVAC contractor. While you have access to your furnace compartment, you should vacuum out the entire thing. This will prevent your pump from getting immediately dirty again.

As you can see, this is a very simple project, but it is definitely worth doing every couple of years. It won't cost you any money, but it could end up reducing your utility bill and increasing the lifespan of your furnace.