Furnace Exhaust Motor Troubles – One Possible Fix

Furnace Exhaust Motor Troubles - One Possible Fix

Now I am writing this for the handy guy that just does not know much about the furnace. If you know yourself not to be handy this project is probably above you.

I have a high-efficiency furnace that was built installed in 1997 so today just weeks before the start of 2011 I realized it is 13/14 years old. It is the type that has an exhaust blower that vents the hot gases out the side of the house. What I found was it was cold and the furnace did not kick on. When I pulled the front cover to me it smelled hot like burning wiring that hotwiring smell. Just then it tried to start.

Now the sequence of events is the blower motor runs (inducer blower) this causes a slight vacuum on the chamber for the hot gas ignition. It must sense this vacuum or it will not start. What I noticed it the inducer motor has a little fan on the outside to push air across the motor and cool it. The motor was turning very slowly. I turned off the power and began to examine this by hand. I turned or rotated the motor by hand and notice if spun hard it stopped quickly like not even 2 rotations. What I did was pull the back off the motor, this got the little fan blade off the shaft, allowing me to see the bearing.

Next, I squirted Gumout into both bearings. Now, these are sealed units so I had to soak the motor bearings in Gumout and then rotate the motor many times it did start to loosen up and spin up to 5 rotations after a hard spin. I reassembled it and turned on the power. This had very little effect so I repeated the process and the 2nd time I pulled the shaft in and out and noticed that this seemed to clear something in the bearing. So I re-applied the WD40 or Slick 50 spray in my case and then reassembled and turned on the power.

After this second cleaning and oiling, the furnace has been running a week. My next step was realizing how central this is to proper function I assume it will gum up again. So I went online and found the motor $545 retail from the carrier. Or $197 plus shipping from furnace parts inc. I am waiting now for that to arrive. When it is here I will take the next day off and change this assembly out you reuse the fan blades etc. This action will give us a new motor good for another 10-12 years and a new starting capacitor.

Summary I bought time when I cleaned the bearings, Time to find the part at a discount, and time to ship it here without overnight fees. P.s. it took a lot of solvents to clean sealed bearings. I had to try to get the solvent inside the seal. Not sure which actually did it the solvent or the oil.

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