Is Your Oil Furnace Giving You The Cold Shoulder? Quick Tips To Help Homeowners Continue A Warm Relationship With Their Furnace
Most modern homeowners view their furnace as one of the most dependable, hard-working appliances in their home. This is especially true for those who have oil furnaces, because their simple design has fewer components that could fail during use. In fact, most oil furnaces are usually capable of providing high quality heat for more than a decade, with minimal repairs or problems. Occasionally, however, even an oil furnace can fail to work properly. If you are a homeowner whose relationship with their oil furnace is cooling fast, the following tips can help rekindle the romance and restore your heat.
Blue Is Beautiful
During the process of burning fuel oil to produce heat, a substance called soot is created which can clog the burners in your furnace. A quick way to tell if your furnace's burners are becoming clogged is to look at the color of the flame as it burns. In an oil furnace that is working properly, you will note a blue, evenly distributed flame coming from the burner each time the furnace lights. If the flame is yellow and uneven, the burner is becoming clogged with soot and is unable to burn efficiently which will affect the quality of heat produced in the home. To cure this issue, have your oil furnace serviced and cleaned before each heating season and during periods of heavier than normal usage by a qualified technician who can disassemble all the burner components and remove soot buildup.
The Fuel Quality Issue
If no flame is present on your oil furnace, or the burning process is erratic, you may be experiencing a fuel quality issue. Just like the gasoline in your car's tank, home heating fuel can contain moisture and sediment. If the oil in the storage tank is allowed to drop to a low level, any sediment and moisture that collects at the bottom of the tank will be sucked into the furnace where it can clog the fuel delivery system and affect the efficiency of the oil burner components.
Your fuel oil delivery person can test your tank for moisture by using a measuring stick that has been coated with a water-sensitive material. If excessive water is found, the tank will need to be drained, checked and refilled with fresh, clean fuel. In most cases, homeowners can avoid moisture and sediment issues by monitoring the level of oil inside their storage tank and scheduling it to be filled before the tank level drops below the halfway point. For more information, contact a heating repair professional.