How to Prime an Oil Furnace

man working on a furnace
What You'll Need
Glass jar
Rubber hose
Hose clamp

An oil furnace will rely on oil for it to continue generating heat. If you have an oil furnace, expect that you will need to refill your furnace with oil every now and then. The tip is that you should not allow your furnace to be completely drained of oil. Make sure that you have standby oil. When your oil tank becomes completely empty, air will be introduced into the oil furnace. The result of this is that you will lose the flow of oil into the oil furnace or the prime. There are instances, though, that your oil tank will really be depleted. During those situations, you need to prime your oil furnace.

Step 1 - Turn Off the Furnace

It is crucial for you to turn off your furnace. You can simply flip the power button off. The most important thing is that there should be no electricity flowing into your furnace. Check the emergency shut off switch. Make sure that the switch is turned on. You will find the emergency shut off switch near your building code, usually at the entrance of your basement. You will automatically notice the emergency shut off switch since it has a bright red switch plate. Check your thermostat. Make sure that the thermostat is set at the temperature that you want for your home.

Step 2 - Locate the Bleeder Valve

copper pipes

You need to locate the bleeder valve in your oil furnace. The bleeder valve is situated in the oil feed pipe. The oil feed pipe connects your oil tank to your oil furnace. In order for you to find out where your bleeder valve is, you simply have to follow the copper pipe that goes out of your oil tank and then attaches to the oil furnace. Through the pipe, you will find a spigot pipe attachment that has a lever which is set on a right angle to the attachment. That is the bleeder valve. Place a glass jar under the valve.

Step 3 - Turn the Bleeder Valve On

Before you turn on the bleeder valve, it is imperative that a glass jar is underneath it or else you will be making a mess. To open the bleeder valve, twist the lever so that it is parallel to the pipe attachment. A closed bleeder valve will form a 90 degree angle with the pipe attachment.

Step 4 - Turn the Furnace On

Turn your oil furnace on. You will notice that oil is flowing out of the bleeder valve. The glass jar should be able to catch all of the oil that is expelled from the valve. The entire mechanism is called priming. Should oil sputter everywhere, attach a rubber hose to the bleeder valve and keep the hose secured with the use of a hose clamp. Place the other end of the hose to the glass jar. Simply remove the hose when you are done with the priming procedure.