Is that a clunk or a high-pitched whine you hear from your furnace? Or is the heat blowing cool? Does your furnace not warm up your home no matter how long the heat runs? These are indications that something is wrong with your furnace. Most homeowners face the same set of issues when it comes to their furnace systems. Here are five of the top problems homeowners face with their furnaces.
Problem #1 is a lack of regular, routine maintenance.
Furnaces need to be inspected and maintained every year in order to stay in optimal condition for as long as possible. Failure to keep a schedule of regular maintenance is a setup for problems in the future. It’s important for your furnace system to be inspected and tuned up. Your furnace needs to be checked for many things that are not do-it-yourself issues, such as carbon monoxide, equipment clearances, system safety and air combustion. You can trust that missing routine check ups will lead to your furnace running less efficiently and reliably and/or breakdowns.
Problem #2 is not enough or intermittent heat or no heat at all.
Intermittent, minimal and no heat can indicate several things.
- A clogged filter is one of the biggest culprits for not enough or intermittent heat being produced.
- A furnace that’s not large enough for the space it’s intended to heat is a reason why your system may not be producing enough heat.
- A malfunctioning thermostat can be the source of no heat or minimal heat being produced. A home furnace’s thermostat is the mechanism that controls how much heat your furnace should produce and when it happens. If it’s not working properly, you will have problems with heat production.
- Is the gas valve open? Is the gas line functioning properly? Problems with the power or gas will cause problems with hot air production.
- A faulty ignition or a pilot light that has gone out can cause issues with the heat.
It is important to note that gas lines and valves and ignition systems deal with fire and gas and should only be handled by a trained professional.
Problem #3 is clogged and/or dirty filters.
Filter-related problems are one of the most common issues with home furnaces. Most homeowners forget to have their filters replaced as often as they should. A recent American Housing Survey of the US Census Bureau found that 75% of homes have ducted forced air heat, which functions with a whole house filtration system - 100% of these filters must be changed often. Filters clean the heated air that blows from the furnace into the home. What many homeowners don’t know is that filters also clean the air that goes into the furnace. This, then, offers a double opportunity for a problem.
Dirty filters restrict the airflow to and from your furnace system, which in turn reduces the efficiency and output of your furnace. Clogged and dirty filters also increase the allergens and dust that are floating in the air. If allergy problems seem to worsen unexpectedly, make sure to check your filters. If you hear a high-pitched whistling sound coming from the general vicinity of your furnace, it could be due to dirty filters. Make sure not to neglect your filters.
Problem #4 is a faulty or malfunctioning thermostat.
A malfunctioning thermostat can lead to several problems. It can cause your furnace to not produce any heat or it may produce only minimal heat. The fan may not run properly or efficiently, and of course, the comfort levels will be off and either too cold or too warm.
Problem #5 is a noisy furnace.
Furnaces are made to run quietly in the background. Rumbles, clanks, knocks, squeaks, rattles and whistles are all indications that something isn’t right with your furnace. These sounds tend to point to a clogged burner, airflow problems or mechanical failure.
Airflow problems can be a deeper issue than a quick glance would suggest. They may be due to problems with your furnace system’s fan motors, bearings and belts. Airflow issues can also point to old duct work that needs to be replaced or tears and leaks in the duct work that need to be repaired.
Keep Your Home Furnace in Tiptop Shape
For your furnace to run at peak efficiency, which saves you money in the long run, it’s best to turn to trained professionals who know furnaces. Whether it’s routine maintenance, replacing parts that are suffering from wear and tear or repairing electrical problems, Howell's Heating and Air is here to help you.
Our technicians are trained to identify and fix common problems with furnace equipment. Feel free to contact us to help keep your furnace in tiptop shape.