Owning a gas furnace can be a wonderful way to stay warm when the weather is chilly, and we still haven’t quite reached the start of summer. That means there’s still plenty of time for cold weather to sneak into your life over the next month or so. Don’t turn your furnace off just yet! Moreover, make sure that you’re still taking excellent care of your furnace so that you can avoid common gas furnace problems while you’re still using it. Sometimes it isn’t easy to know how to take care of a heating system as complex as a gas furnace, but knowing where to turn for help can make all the difference. Look no further: we’re here to assist you.
Below, you’ll find an overview of how to deal with common gas furnace problems. Use this to make sure that you’re never caught off guard by an issue with your gas furnace, and that you can stay toasty warm until the weather warms up for good.
Six Common Gas Furnace Problems (Along with Fixes)
These are the complaints we receive from furnace owners most often. If one of these problems is affecting you, look at the information beneath and see whether it helps or not.
- No Hot Air Coming from the Unit
A furnace that is not producing any warm air at all may not be receiving enough gas. Inspect the gas lines and see that they are in proper condition. Your pilot light may also be dirty. Look—but don’t touch! Pilot lights are sensitive and should only be handled by qualified HVAC technicians. If you check both of those issues and still can’t find the problem, your thermostat might merely be set wrong. Otherwise, the problem is likely electrical, and you should contact a professional.
- Not Enough Hot Air Blowing from the Unit
When the unit is only blowing a small quantity of warm air, it could be due to a dirty filter. If filters are left alone for long enough, they become congested with dust, dirt, and other airborne contaminants. Over time, this can prevent air from moving freely into and through your ducts. Change your filters on a monthly basis to avoid this problem and arrange for duct cleaning every 2-5 years.
- The Air Coming from the Unit is Too Cool
If the system is running, but the air is blowing cold, the problem is most likely either with your thermostat or your pilot light. Check the thermostat yourself, but leave the pilot light to a professional.
- The System Starts and Stops Frequently
When a furnace starts and stops quickly, it’s called short cycling. Short cycling is bad news because it means you’ve probably been using a furnace that isn’t the right size for your building. If you notice persistent short cycling, stop using it and call the company that installed it for you. Have them check the unit and make sure that it’s the right size—especially if your system is still relatively new.
- The Blower Will Not Stop Running
When the blower motor in your furnace never turns off, it might be due to a problem with the limit switch. Replacing the limit switch isn’t easy, so call a licensed HVAC technician to deal with the problem and don’t use the system until they’ve done so.
- The Furnace is Making Strange Noises
If your furnace is making a banging noise, the blower motor could have come loose inside the unit. If that is the case, it may be dangerous to continue using the furnace until you can have the problem resolved. Other noises can indicate that your burner has become clogged, or that you have a significant blockage in the system impacting its airflow. In any of these cases, it is best to leave the furnace alone until you have called a professional.
Some Common Gas Furnace Problems Can be Dealt with Alone, but Others Can’t be Risked
It is vital to note the difference between a problem you can solve yourself and one that must be attended to by an experienced HVAC technician. Make sure you don’t take the problem with your furnace as an opportunity to “teach yourself” a new skill. The only thing you’re likely to teach yourself is what a new furnace costs. Watching your contractor work can be an excellent way to pick up general maintenance tips, but it’s best to leave severe problems to people who have been dealing with them for years.
You deserve to enjoy your furnace, especially when there’s still potential for cold weather in your area. Make sure you keep the guide above close by at all times and consult it if you encounter any anomalies in the way your furnace performs. We hope you’ll manage to avoid any problems and make it into the summer without a care in the world.