Whether it’s a leaky furnace or if you flick the switch to power up your heating system when it gets chilly and it won’t start, common furnace problems can impact your home at any moment.
Regardless of the cause, learning how your heating system works and a little bit about some typical furnace problems is vital in deciding whether you can troubleshoot on your own or if you need professional support. By watching the furnace's behavior, listening for peculiar noises and checking for signs of damage or blockage, you can narrow down the possible causes.
If you're uncertain about the problem or don't have the necessary skills and tools, it's best to call a professional HVAC company like Farnell Mechanical, Inc.. We can accurately pinpoint the issue and execute the required repairs or maintenance, so we can get your furnace up and running ASAP.
Here's more about what causes a furnace to leak water and eight other common heating dilemmas:
1. My Furnace Is Leaking Water
A furnace can leak water for a number of reasons. One possibility is a condensate leak, where the water created during the combustion process is not effectively draining away. This could be due to a plugged condensate drain line or a failing condensate pump. Another potential cause of water leakage from a furnace is a cracked heat exchanger, which can be responsible for water—as well as dangerous gases—leaking out of the furnace.
It is necessary to deal with water leaks immediately to prevent further damage to your furnace. Consulting with a professional HVAC technician like the crew at Farnell Mechanical, Inc. is recommended to diagnose and resolve the issue properly.
2. My Furnace Is Blowing Cold Air/Not Blowing Hot Air
Some possible causes for a furnace blowing cold air or not blowing hot air include a malfunctioning thermostat, a problem with the pilot light or ignition system, a blocked air filter, or a malfunctioning heating element. It also may be your furnace is overheating and shutting off as a safety measure.
If your furnace won’t blow hot air, it's best to contact a trained HVAC tech to diagnose and fix the problem. They can provide an accurate assessment and advise you on the proper solution.
3. My Furnace Struggles to Keep Up
A frequent reason your furnace isn’t keeping up on a cold day is that your home is lacking insulation, which can result in heat loss and lower efficiency. Another reason your furnace is falling short is because it’s too small for your home, so it can’t produce enough heat to completely warm the space. A defective thermostat or ductwork problems can also cause inconsistent heating.
To correct this, first check your home’s insulation level and make sure it’s enough to protect your home. Also, look at the thermostat to make sure it’s set right and the batteries are working.
If the problem lingers, consider contacting an experienced HVAC company, such as Farnell Mechanical, Inc., who can look over your system, determine the root cause and provide solutions such as furnace replacement, repairing ductwork or adjusting your thermostat settings.
4. My Furnace Isn't Running at All
If your furnace is not working, there are a couple of steps you can take to troubleshoot before calling a heating specialist. Make sure the thermostat is set right and the batteries are fresh. If the furnace still doesn't turn on, check the circuit breaker or fuse box to verify power is reaching the furnace.
If there is power but no heat, the problem may be with the ignition system or gas supply. In that case, it's better to contact a knowledgeable HVAC technician for diagnosis and repair.
5. My Furnace Turns On and Off
If your furnace is short cycling, that means it is turning on and off often at short intervals as opposed to running in regular cycles like it should. This can lead to inefficiency, more energy use and potential damage to your heating system.
If you think your furnace is short cycling, the first step is to check your unit’s air filter. Filters should be changed on a regular basis to ensure air flow, so if your furnace air filter is clogged with debris you should exchange it for a clean one—and make sure it is pointing in the right direction. If that doesn’t do the trick, look at your thermostat and verify it’s set right and the batteries are good.
If those two things don’t work, it’s smart to call experts like the crew at Farnell Mechanical, Inc.. Quick professional attention will help restore the proper functioning of your furnace and avoid more complications and high energy bills.
6. My Furnace Won't Stop Humming
If your furnace is making a humming noise, it often is a sign of a malfunction with the electrical components or the blower motor. Therefore, if you notice your furnace making a humming noise, it is important to take action.
If the noise doesn't go away, it is a good idea to get in touch with a professional HVAC technician.
7. My Furnace Makes Loud Noises
If your furnace is making a constant loud noise, it's important to handle the issue quickly to prevent further damage or potential safety hazards. One common reason is a malfunctioning blower motor or fan, which can create a grinding or screeching sound. Another common cause is a loose or worn-out belt that may produce a squealing or rattling noise.
Due to the complexity of furnace systems and potential risks involved, it's better to get a hold of a heating and cooling specialist.
8. My Furnace Is Not Turning On
If your furnace won't turn on, make sure the thermostat is set to the preferred temperature, is in heating mode and the batteries are good. Then, verify that the circuit breaker or fuse that controls the furnace is functioning properly. If these basic checks don't take care of the problem, you can inspect the furnace's power switch or emergency shutoff switch to verify they're in the "on" position and weren’t accidentally turned off.
If those steps don’t do the job, contact an expert for furnace repair.
9. My Furnace Is on but Not Igniting
Like a a furnace that won't turn on at all, a furnace that isn’t igniting can be the result of a dirty air filter or a tripped circuit breaker. So, checking out the air filter and looking over your circuit breakers are a good place to start.
Other common causes of a furnace not igniting include a faulty igniter or faulty flame sensor. Symptoms of these include the furnace repeatedly making an attempt to ignite without success, an absence of heat production or the furnace is making a burning or gas smell. Both of these issues can be simply fixed by HVAC specialists like the team at Farnell Mechanical, Inc..