Just as you may have noticed that your car runs more smoothly after a new oil change, the same principle works for your furnace, when it comes to a new or clean furnace filter. The main component of forced air and hot water heating units is called a heat exchanger. The purpose of this clever component is to take the heat that is produced by burning fuel in your furnace and transfer it to water or air so that it can be distributed throughout the house. The heat exchanger is traditionally hidden from view in hot water heating systems and is only occasionally visible in forced air systems.
If you look at a modern gas-fired forced-air furnace, here’s all you’ll find. First, you will find a solid state heater control, which has a fan assembly and is visible on the rear of the heater. Below you will find a draft inducer, which provides a fan-forced exhaust. Third, you’ll find an igniter and flame sensor, because your oven is actually running on firepower. Below you will find the gas valve and manifold, along with the gas burners. On the outside of all of these you will have them, followed by furnace filters or other air filters. Keep in mind that various aspects of this concept will vary depending on the model of furnace you use, although some things will remain the same, including the igniter, furnace filter, and heat exchanger.
What causes heat exchangers to malfunction or not work at all is the development of a hole, crack, or deformation that allows hot water to escape or exhaust gases from combustion to escape into the air inside the house. . They eventually crack or warp over time simply due to the constant heating and cooling the system experiences throughout the year. However, most heat exchangers can last a significant amount of time, often not their intended lifespan, depending on whether conditions are ideal or not. Regular cleaning and maintenance of the heater play an important role in determining the expected life of a heat exchanger, as well as the environment that exists around the heater unit.
Another factor that greatly contributes to whether or not heat exchangers live their useful life correctly is reduced airflow, which occurs as a result of dirty furnace filters. [http://www.appraisalmatters.com/WinterizeYourHome], dirty fan blades, clogged vents, and dirty ductwork. All of these factors contribute to wear on fan motors, which can significantly reduce heater efficiency and also burn them out prematurely. Both fuel-fired and forced-air types of heaters are prone to overheating in response to airflow obstructions. Most modern ovens are built in a way that allows them to shut down if temperatures become unreasonably high due to a dirty or overused filter. However, if the internal temperature rise caused by dirt and debris is only moderate, the heater may not turn off, but the heat may still be sufficient to cause metal fatigue in the main exchanger, which can cause serious problems down the line.
The best way to protect against premature burnout of your furnace’s heat exchanger is to have an annual inspection and monthly cleaning of your furnace filters. The exam, which must be done by a licensed mechanic, should be relatively inexpensive and give you great peace of mind. Another useful innovation is the carbon monoxide or CO detector, which is an easy and inexpensive way to protect yourself against exhaust leaks from your furnace.