Try These Simple Fixes First If Your Furnace Is Acting Up

Posted on: 4 May 2018

If your furnace is not producing adequate heat, you should check out the simple potential problems before calling a technician or tearing everything apart. That way, you don't spend a lot of resources for a problem that could have been fixed with the flip of a switch. Here are some of the simple checks you should always try first:

Check the Switches and Circuit Breakers

Your first step should be to confirm that all the settings and switches are correct and the system is actually getting power. This is because it is easy to assume that a furnace is malfunctioning while, in the real sense, it is not just getting power. Check for a standard wall switch near or on the furnace and a push-in switch near the blower motor. Also, check the circuit breaker to which the furnace is connected. You can also check the user manual for all the switches and settings needed for the furnace to work.

Check If the Furnace Is Getting Adequate Gas

You may also be dealing with furnace problems because the furnace is not getting adequate fuel. This can happen if the gas valve has accidentally been left on the "Off" position or there is a problem with gas supply to the house. It may help to trace the gas supply pipe from the furnace to check if there is a problem.

Check If You Have Thermostat Issues

You also need to confirm that everything is alright as far as thermostat issues go. Here are some of the specific checks to make:

  • The thermostat is showing the correct date and time, if it is a programmable one
  • The thermostat is switched to "Heat" and not "Cool"
  • The thermostat's batteries have power (in case there is a black out)
  • The thermostat's wires have continuity

Check the Pilot Light

For a gas furnace, it's also good to check if the issue is originating from the pilot light area. For example, if the pilot tip (the tip giving off the pilot light) is clogged with corrosion or combustion residue, the pilot light may not be strong enough to aid the combustion of the gas. A related problem is if the thermocouple, which should be touching the pilot light to trigger the opening of the gas valve, is bent, broken or misaligned.

Of course, not every furnace problem will be fixed by a simple check; some require the input of a professional like those at Environmental  Matters HVAC LLC. That is why you should not hesitate before consulting a technician if the simple checks don't work.


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