Oil heat provides clean and efficient energy for the home. However, as with other heating appliances, oil heating appliances require proper upkeep. First, you should regularly measure the temperature of the flue gases. Doing this will let you know just how efficiently your heater is heating your home and ensure that the temperature is not above the recommended limit. The temperature should measure between 350⁰F and 540⁰F. If the temperature is too high, you are running the risk of a fire, while at the same time endangering your family and anyone else who enters your home. Special thermometers are available to safely perform this task from heating supply stores.
The air filter on your oil heater should be changed monthly. Alternatively, there are filters available that do not need to be changed every month. Instead, they can be removed, washed, and re-placed every month. Washable filters are a good way to save you some money on air filters. Make sure that you do not replace or clean the air filter while your oil heater is on, however. For safety, turn off the heat in your house before proceeding.
It is important to regularly check the oil level in your heater. The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources recommends that you do not let your oil level dip below 1/4 of a tank. If your oil levels are too low, it may cause the sediment that builds up in the bottom of your tank to be pumped into the fuel line and, subsequently, into the burner. This would cause your filters and equipment to become dangerously clogged.
Just as with any other fuel burning appliance, oil heaters produce byproducts. The byproducts associated with oil burning heaters are carbon and sulfur. These combine to form soot, which deposits on the walls of the flue liner, in a similar fashion to creosote. As the soot accumulates, it may restrict airflow and cause problems with appliance efficiency, system overheating, and air contamination.
If the flue is too clogged, it may backflow into your home and expose you and your family to nitrogen, carbon monoxide, and water vapor fumes. Along with being unpleasant, exposure to these things is incredibly dangerous. Excess carbon monoxide can cause headaches, flu-like symptoms, nausea, and other serious medical issues. Getting your oil heater professionally cleaned will keep your home efficient and your family safe.
If you are currently using an oil heater in your home, you should schedule annual maintenance for it before beginning to use it for the year. Late summer or early autumn are ideal times to arrange for a professional to come clean and inspect the heater. Magic Broom does not install or service oil-burning furnaces, however we do specialize in oil flue cleaning! We have the necessary brushes and tools to remove soot buildup and we also make use of a powerful, dust-free vacuum system. You can rest assured that by hiring us to clean your flue, your home will remain mess-free. You can reach us at 301-843-1491 or click here to schedule an appointment online, today.