How to dust and clean your furnace motor for optimum energy efficiency

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Keeping the motor on your furnace clean and free of dust or debris is a great way to ensure it’s using energy efficiently. Not only that, but it’s easy to do and will only take a few minutes to do. Just follow these easy steps to clean your furnace motor:

Things you’ll need for the job:

  • Soft brush
  • Vacuum
  • Screwdriver (potentially)

How to clean your furnace motor

Before getting started, be sure to watch this video to learn more about how your furnace works and the best way to maintain it. (skip forward to the 6:30 seconds to see a demonstration of how to clean the motor):

1. Turn off the power to the furnace. Whenever you’re doing maintenance work on your furnace you’ll want to be sure that the power has been turned off first. Simply hit the switch on the side of the furnace or turn off the power at the circuit breaker.

2. Open up the front panel on your furnace. The front plate on most modern furnaces will simply lift up and out of place, but if you have an older model the panel might be held in by screws. If yours is the later be sure to have a screwdriver on hand in order to remove the screws. Once they’re out all you have to do is gently lift up on the front plate.

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3. Lightly dust the motor and internal components of your furnace. Take your brush and gently wipe down all the internal components of the furnace. Make sure to be gentle while dusting around any electrical connections or wires. Dislodging them will cause the furnace to function improperly and could be very costly to repair. After you’ve dusted the internal components of your furnace, take your vacuum and clean up any dust that came free during the cleaning.

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4. Replace the front panel of the furnace. Gently put the front panel back in place (and secure it with screws if needed).

5. Turn the furnace back on. Now turn your furnace back on and you’re all set.

While you may not notice a significant drop in your energy bills from performing this simple task, you will help to keep the system as clean as possible. Which will only help it to run more efficiently.

If you’re looking for more ways to make your home energy efficient, be sure to check out our green home improvement projects. Green Living Ideas, after all, is a top 20 home improvement website!

Photo courtesy of the Flickr Creative Commons.

About the Author

graduated from Pacific Lutheran University (PLU) with a degree in journalism and has made sustainability and eco-conscious living mainstays of both his professional and personal life. It was during his time at PLU that he began his journey with sustainability and it's what has led him to writing for Green Living Ideas. He currently resides in Honolulu and works for Pono Home, an energy efficiency company focused on reducing carbon emissions and promoting a healthier, greener lifestyle.