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How to change the oil filter on your boiler or furnace

Table of Contents
4.6/5 - (8 votes)

OK, I understand that this seems like a very intimidating process to most but it’s actually very easy. The first thing you need to do is find that switch, the one with the red switch plate. Yup, you know which one I’m talking about. OK, turn it off. Now, look for the canister, this is where the oil line from your tank goes to. You should find a valve close by, go ahead and turn that off too. Now you will either need to unscrew it or remove the bolt, it should be on the top somewhere. After you remove the bolt, you may need to give the canister a little kick to break the seal loose. Make sure you have a pan under it, as oil and black crap will come out. Remove the filter. Examine it well, and transfer any parts on it to the new one. On the top of the canister, you will find a black rubber seal. Remove this and replace this seal with the new one that came with the filter. Now you will need to install the canister with the new filter in place. Install the bolt snug by hand. Then tighten it the rest of the way with a wrench. Wipe it all down and turn the valve back on.

You’re almost done! On the pump, (watch my video), you’ll find a small valve. Loosen this up a few turns. If it’s in a hard-to-reach area, you may want to put a small house around the end of it as the oil will pump out of this rather quickly. OK get ready! Have someone helps you from here. Have them turn the switch on while you watch some oil and lots of air come out. You may have to let it run for about 20 seconds or so until you see anything begin to come out, but once it does, it will run fast. Once the oil begins to come out in a steady stream, without air, quickly close this valve. At the same time, you should see and hear the burner kick on.

Check for leaks and then you’re done! If the system shuts down, this would be because the burner did not detect any fire within the time limit it has. This is OK, you will just have to wait about five minutes and then hit the reset button on the transformer. Now, this is real, real important! You never, ever want to reset that more than say two times. There could be other reasons why it didn’t fire up and raw oil could be filling up the fire chamber. If it gets to this point, you really want to call a heating guy.

If you get stuck at any point just send me an email and I’ll walk you through it.

How to change the oil filter on your boiler or furnace
Watch this video on YouTube.
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Comments ( 3 )

  1. First class directions for a person intent on changing the filter in question. Thank you.
    J. Wojski

  2. Hello,

    You have some great information on your site. I have a spin on oil filter that I need to replace. This has the bolt off to the side and not in the middle like in your video. Do I need to do anything with this bolt or can I just spin the canister until it comes off? I have a Sid Harvey’s 264-91 filter if that helps. Any advice you be greatly appreciated!

    • I haven’t seen one of those in a while. If the filter looks like a oil filter from your car then yes. Just unscrew it and replace it. The bolt on the side should be a extra bleeder.

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