How to Repair a Furnace Heat Exchanger
Furnace Heat Exchanger Repairs
Furnace heat exchangers are a critical component of furnaces. When you get your furnace, there is a furnace heat exchanger (also called furnace filter or furnace blower) which needs to be installed in the furnace. The furnace heat exchanger carries both heat and air from the furnace. Air is pushed through the exchanger, where it is combined with outside air and pushed back into the furnace where it heats up. If the exchanger becomes clogged, or if certain elements of the heat exchanger require attention, furnace repairs are needed. When to repair furnace heat exchanger is an important question that must be addressed by knowledgeable furnace service technicians who have installed and maintained furnaces for many years.
There are several reasons why the furnace heat exchanger will need to be repaired. If a metal or plastic part on the exchanger breaks, then the unit will not operate correctly and may potentially cause a fire. When the metal or plastic part breaks, the furnace can experience significant pressure which can cause cracks. Cracks in the exchanger can also cause air to escape from the furnace because the area is now leaky. In some cases, a small metal piece could break off inside the exchanger and travel down the chimney and into the home causing a carbon monoxide leak.
When should you consider furnace repair near me? This question should be addressed only after you have verified that the furnace has been operating efficiently and does not need repairs. There are situations where the furnace could break down without warning. For example, a drop in outdoor temperature or sudden increase in indoor temperatures could cause a furnace heat exchanger to break down.
There are several different types of parts in a furnace heat exchanger. Each of these parts are designed to do a specific job which depends on the type of furnace. If your furnace has an oil burner at the base of the furnace, then the burner is generally located above the furnace heat exchanger. If the furnace has a gas furnace, then the heat exchanger is located below the furnace.
The most critical area of the heat exchanger in a furnace is the “safe” region which contains the metal clips that allow the metal to heat up to the burning point. When this metal becomes hot it contacts the burning components of the furnace. The metal clips often engage in a “recess” area, which is an area where the metal begins to cool. The process of cooling the metal can cause stress and wear in the clips resulting in premature failure of the heat exchanger.
The basic steps of repairing your furnace heat exchanger include removing the metal clips and testing the furnace. When you remove the metal clips from the heat exchanger, you will need to take some metal shavings with an X-Acto knife and smooth out the sharp ends on both sides of the clip. The best way to test the furnace is to place the clip over a load, such as a cardboard or thick carpet. If there is a coolant leak, then the metal clip may be OK. This will indicate that your furnace has a problem and you should repair it.
The second step of repairing your furnace heat exchanger is to disconnect the supply to the furnace. Once you have disconnected the supply you must locate the base flue of the furnace and turn off the power to the furnace. You must then locate the base flue valve (usually at the front of the furnace) and turn it clockwise until it reaches an open position. From here you can access the furnace heat exchanger and disconnect the pipes leading to it.
The third step is to secure the base flue valve to its open position using a pliers. This will ensure that the clips are not coming loose and allowing water to flow into the furnace. Once the pipes are free of water you can reconnect the base flue to the furnace. At this point you can remove the heat exchanger from the furnace and place it in a safe, dry area. This will ensure that no further damage will occur to the furnace and that it will continue to work correctly.
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