Gas furnace problems can be frustrating to experience. While dealing with any HVAC problem is never much fun, furnace failures often mean choosing between frigid indoor temperatures and expensive emergency repairs. Furnaces can fail for many reasons, but these failures often produce a relatively predictable set of symptoms.
Before the cold season begins in earnest, it can be helpful to learn a bit about the problems you may face if your furnace develops issues. This article will discuss three common failure conditions on gas furnaces and how to recognize the signs and symptoms of each.
1. Furnace Doesn't Have Power
Nearly all modern gas furnaces require electricity to operate. Your furnace uses this electricity to power its main control board and, most likely, an electric igniter. If your furnace doesn't have power, it won't turn on at all. There's usually a light somewhere on your furnace or control board that will indicate that the system has power.
In most cases, you can hunt down the cause of this problem yourself. First, check to make sure the switch for the furnace is on. If it is, move on to inspect and (if necessary) reset the breaker. If your furnace still isn't getting power, you'll probably need a professional to check the electrical conditions. You should also avoid using your furnace if it repeatedly trips its breaker.
2. Furnace Won't Ignite
One of the most common failure conditions you may face is a furnace that won't ignite, even though it has power. You should be able to hear your furnace igniting when you stand near it. Try turning your thermostat up a few degrees above the ambient interior temperature and listening near the furnace cabinet. If you can't hear the burners coming on at all, your furnace likely isn't igniting.
Many potential underlying problems can prevent your furnace from lighting, including everything from fuel line issues and bad safety switches to faulty igniters. If your furnace has a blinking error light, consult your manual for error codes as a first step. In most cases, you'll want to bring in a professional HVAC contractor to diagnose the issue.
3. Furnace Shuts Down
Your furnace may also ignite, run for a short while, and then shut down. If the furnace shuts down because it's tripping your breaker, this could be the result of a failing blower motor or a bad control board. On the other hand, a furnace with power will usually shut down quickly if one or more safety switches trip to the "off" position.
In most cases, a furnace that's shutting down after a minute or two may be overheating. Furnaces typically overheat due to restricted airflow, often caused by dirty filters. Check and replace (if necessary) your filter, but call an HVAC technician if this doesn't solve the issue. Overheating can damage your heat exchanger and cause a potentially dangerous situation, so it's a problem you should never ignore.
For more information, contact a furnace repair service.Share
7 October 2021
Every summer, I agonized over energy bills that would shoot into the stratosphere as a result of my efforts to keep cool in the heat. Every time I turned the temperature down, my bills increased. This summer, I decided to take some of the control over my energy bill back. I installed reflective film on my windows that reduced the amount of light and heat coming into the house. I started serving more cold meals or asking my husband to barbecue outside, so that my air conditioner didn't have to compete with the hot stove, and I started doing laundry at night to reduce appliance heat in the house at peak times. I also had ceiling fans installed. So far, the difference in my bill has been tremendous. This blog is a way for me to explore other ways to reduce energy drain during the summer months.