Direct Vent Wall Furnace Maintenance Tips
Direct vent wall furnace stoves are an ideal device for heating a family home, or for warming one room for all of the day. They are not only attractive, with their flame-like fireplace, but they are also more fuel efficient than standard methods of heating the home. In addition to providing a warming glow throughout a room, they are also fairly simple to keep maintained, reducing the need for emergency gas services, and helping to keep the direct vent wall furnace more efficient. If you are considering maintaining your direct vent furnace yourself, here are a few basic tips on keeping it as good as new.
Keep the Furnace Clean
One of the most important jobs you can do to maintain your direct vent wall furnace is to keep it clean. You don't have to clean it from top-to-bottom after every use, but after a few weeks, turn the gas control valve to Off, and allow to cool. Once it is fully cool, begin to clean inside the cabinet, using only a damp cloth. Do not use home cleaners, or mass-market cleaning products, just simply wipe away the bits of dust and dirt that you can see. Most particularly, don't use any cleaning solvents or fluids that can potentially leave residue or coating on the direct vent cabinet, as this can burn while the furnace is heating, and release toxic fumes.
You should also clean the mechanism of the direct vent at the same time, including cleaning the fan motor thoroughly, and then adding a layer of oil. The latter should be performed at least once every year (every 12 months) using an S.A.E type oil. Do this by turning the fan motor until you see a small hole near to the crank attachment. Place the oil nozzle into this hole, and squirt. Wipe away any excess oil.
Check the Venting System
As often as you like, check the venting pipes and mechanisms for debris and dirt. You should use a stepladder to view the outside opening of your vents, and ensure that the duct or ventilation tube has not become clogged or dirty. Check the duct for signs of mold, particularly white or black mold around the edges of the vent. If you detect a problem of this sort, it might be necessary to call in a professional to help you clean the pipes. Run a wire down the ventilation pipes until you reach the stove, in order to ensure that the airways are clear.
Check the Reset Limit Switch
The manual reset limit switch is a vital component of your appliance. In order to maintain it, you should disable the primary limit switch, and heat the furnace to its maximum temperature. Do not exceed this temperature, but use the manual limit switch to override (this will be done automatically). This is to ensure that it works, as it is perhaps your most important piece of safety equipment. Allow a cool-down period, and then manually reset the switch. If you discover any problems with this switch, call a gas service engineer as soon as possible.