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7 Common Furnace Problems

April 07, 2021

Furnace issues can be downright annoying and a complete hassle to deal with – especially in the colder months of the year. Chances are that if you’re on this article you’re looking for answers on how to get your heating system back in shape. Luckily for you, most furnace issues are simple to fix or identify. Let’s take a moment to look at 8 common furnace problems and how to fix them.

1. Wrong Thermostat Setting

Sometimes the simplest solutions can solve a major problem. Before you even inspect your furnace, take a look at your thermostat. Check to see if it’s on and if you have it in the right setting. Perhaps someone adjusted the temperature without you knowing or maybe it was accidentally turned off. If it is off and won’t turn back on, change the batteries. As obvious as this may seem, it’s not a bad idea to check it if you haven’t already.

It’s also possible that the thermostat’s battery is dead and needs to be replaced.

2. Filter Needs to Be Replaced

One important mechanism that helps your HVAC system run smoothly is the filter. It’s tasked with catching all the pollen, dust, pet dander, and other pollutants circulating through your home. Over time, all these contaminants will buildup and your filter won’t be able to do its job efficiently. This will lead to issues with your furnace and could prevent your home from heating up properly. We recommend that you change out your HVAC filter at least every 1-3 months for 1 inch filters and 3-6 months for box/whole house filters.

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3. Furnace Isn’t Getting Power

If it seems like your furnace isn’t getting any power, don’t panic! There are a few different ways to troubleshoot this issue. First and foremost, be sure it’s plugged in just in case the cord was knocked loose. Next, flip the breaker to see if a tripped breaker is the culprit. Keep an eye out for a repeat tripped breaker, this could point to an issue with your wiring or circuit breaker. In that case, call an electrician to investigate.

4. Issues With the Pilot Light or Ignition

Check to see if the pilot light is lit. In this case, you can carefully follow your manual to reignite it. Be sure to turn off the gas supply and wait for at least ten minutes before you attempt to light it. Natural gas is extremely flammable and there could be a buildup if your pilot light has been off for a long time. If this continues to happen, you’ll likely need to call an HVAC professional to help get to the bottom of the issue.

5. Furnace Making a Strange Noise

Rattling, squeaking, or rumbling of any kind coming from a furnace should be addressed as soon as possible. There can be a number of causes to this issue. Luckily, those with the right tools and know-how can possibly fix it on their own. Check the belt first. You might need to tighten it or replace it if it’s worn down. A broken belt will usually be accompanied by problems with the furnace not blowing out air properly.

If the belt looks like it’s in good condition, the issue might be another mechanism. The ignition might be faulty or the blower motor lubrication ports could need oil – there’s a long list of possibilities. It’s best to call a professional if you can’t immediately nail down the issue.

6. Safety Switch Is On

Another simple solution could be the safety switch. If the access panel door to your furnace is open, the safety switch will activate so the fan burner won’t turn on. Be sure this panel is secured and see if that makes any difference with the issue.

7. Issue With Limit Control Switch

If you notice that your unit never shuts off, this might be an issue with the limit control switch. Take a look under the box that directs heat from the furnace to your ducts. This is where you’ll find the limit control switch. While it is a bit more complicated, you can test and replace this part yourself. You’ll just need a multimeter and some basic knowledge of the process.

Remember to turn off the power and close the gas valve if you choose to tackle this project yourself.


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