How to Clean Your Burner

Introduction: How to Clean Your Burner

Owning a home is a large responsibility that requires maintenance to some expensive systems. One of the most important is your furnace. Your furnace controls your heat. In order for your furnace to run properly, your burner needs to be cleaned on a yearly basis. As far as my interest in this topic goes, my father does this for a living. As a kid I would travel with him to jobs and watch as he worked. Eventually as I got older I began to do some of the work myself. Although I'm not a professional like my father, I'd like to pass some of the knowledge I've learned over the years to teach beginners how to clean a burner to ensure the proper running of your furnace.

Step 1: Alerts

  1. This procedure should only be used on a properly running furnace. If furnace suffers from more complicated issues, contact a licensed professional.
  2. Failure to reassemble burner correctly can lead to injury, death, and or property loss.

Step 2: Equipment Needed

  • Respirator and or Dust Mask
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Foaming grease cleaner
  • Common Tip Screwdriver
  • Nozzle Wrench
  • File
  • 3/8 Wrench
  • 7/16 Wrench
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • 5/8 wrench
  • 3/4 wrench

Step 3: Parts Needed

  • Nozzle (Size varies to meet specifications of your furnace)

Step 4: Turn Off Fuel Valve on Oil Tank

  1. Turn yellow valve next to oil filter canister to off position.

Step 5: Turn Off Service Switch

  • Flip furnace service switch into off position.

Step 6: Remove Burner Access Panel

Step 7: Open the Transformer

  1. Loosen transformer tabs with flat head screwdriver, moving tabs towards furnace.
  2. Open transformer

Step 8: Loosen Oil Line

  1. Taking your 7/16 wrench, loosen oil line from pump to nozzle assembly.
  2. Remove nozzle assembly nut.

Step 9: Remove Nozzle Assembly

  1. Turn nozzle assembly to right towards interior of burner and lift out of the burner.

Step 10: Nozzle Assembly: Nozzle Removal

  1. Take 3/4 inch wrench. Put wrench on nozzle assembly.
  2. Take 5/8 inch wrench. Put wrench on nozzle and loosen.
  3. Remove Nozzle

Step 11: Clean Nozzle Assembly

  1. Apply foaming grease cleaner to nozzle assembly. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Take rag and wipe down entire assembly removing residue.
  3. Taking your file, file electrode points. (Make sure electrode gap is approximately 1/8 inch.

Step 12: Install New Nozzle

Step 13: Place Nozzle Back in Burner

  1. With fitting facing up, slide nozzle assembly back into chassis. Rotate assembly to left back into original position.

Step 14: Reassemble Nozzle Assembly to Oil Line

  1. Screw nozzle nut hand tight.
  2. Re install nozzle line and tighten using 7/16 wrench.
  3. Close Transformer.
  4. Re Tighten Clips.
  5. Turn oil back on.

Step 15: Turn Thermostat Up to High

Step 16: Loosen Bleeder Screw

  1. Take 3/8 wrench, place on bleeder screw and loosen.
  2. Open bleeder screw and turn on burner switch.
  3. Run furnace until you get a clear stream of oil without air coming from the bleeder screw.
  4. ALERT: If burner shuts off before clean stream of oil is attained, press red reset button.Once clear stream of oil is attained, shut off safety switch.
  5. Close bleeder screw.
  6. Reset thermostat to preferred setting.

Step 17: Place Access Panel Back in Place

Step 18: Conclusion

Your burner should now be operating normally. There should be very little sound coming from your furnace. If any further problems persist, call a licensed professional. To keep your furnace running properly you should service it once a year.

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    4 Discussions

    brent boesch
    brent boesch

    3 years ago

    how do you clean out pezp line on a gas furnace?


    4 years ago

    This is great. Thank you for taking the mystery out of my oil burner. This can save $150 a year at least. Remember to change the filter as well.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you for sharing. I recently had to perform this same cleaning during the coldest part of the winter. Do you need to replace the nozzle, or can you just clean it?


    5 years ago on Introduction

    A lot of good information here. Thanks for sharing! I hope we see more from you in the future!