Proper Maintenance And Warranty Use For Heating Systems
Whether you're using a fireplace insert, heat pump, or furnace, you need to keep an eye out for performance issues. Wear and tear, incorrect calibration, and the buildup of dust and ash can cut down on heating potential, which means wasting energy/fuel and making it more expensive to get comfortable. Here are a few maintenance tips to get the repairs you need while potentially staying under warranty.
Cleaning And General Maintenance
Most fireplace inserts are cleaned by using a wire brush. A firm toothbrush can be used as a quick substitute or to clean in specific areas, but there are precision brushes available for fireplace use to get into the more difficult areas.
If you live in a coastal area, be careful about how you clean cast iron inserts. Your local water treatment facility likely can't remove all of the salt from your water, which leads to accelerated corrosion. Just using tap water to clean your cast iron can lead to surface layers flaking off within a day and brittle integrity issues after just a month.
That doesn't mean you can't use tap water. Just make sure that you dab any excess water off of the iron insert's surface. A few droplets here and there will evaporate before causing a problem, and the left behind minimum traces of salt aren't an issue.
What you're preventing is large amount of H2O and salt from coming into contact with each other and then reacting with your cast iron. This means leaving enough water that can rest on any cast iron surface. You can even pour a container of salt onto a dry cast iron piece with no problem; just make sure that large droplets or puddles of water aren't collecting in cast iron grooves.
Review Your Warranty
Each fireplace insert comes with a manufacturer warranty. For your protection and documentation, be sure to fill out the model number, serial number, and date purchased when you receive your fireplace insert.
Review the terms of the warranty carefully. Many inserts will contain a limited warranty, which may not cover normal wear and tear of products over long periods of time. They are mostly to cover faulty pieces or manufacturing errors that are rare, but an unexpected part of modern machining processes.
The warranty information may have specific details about how the products interact with different fuel systems. Keep in mind that the type of burn or the damage caused by using incorrect fuel types is visible even after thorough cleaning due to the loss of burned material, so make sure to follow fuel use instructions carefully.
Contact a heating unit installation professional if you need a new device after running out of time on your warranty or to get an expert who can service your warranty. A company like C B Lucas Heating & Air Conditioning can help evaluate your overall heating needs.