Step-By-Step Basic Furnace Troubleshooting
Best Tips For Furnace Troubleshooting
You go to the thermostat to turn up the heat only to find your furnace isn’t getting the memo. Of course, it would have to happen in the middle of winter, just when you need it the most. Do you react by making a frantic call to a professional HVAC repair company and hope they can send a technician over stat?
You don’t have to be so hasty. There are steps you can take to do some furnace troubleshooting yourself. These involve easy tasks that anybody can do. It’s possible that the issue really isn’t a problem requiring professional service. Be sure to go through these steps first to avoid a service call fee you could have avoided by checking these few items. These tips sound funny coming from an HVAC company but our goal is to be here when you truly need us. We also know that by providing our clients these valuable tips we are going to be able to build a long term relationship as your trusted HVAC company.
Here are a few furnace troubleshooting tips that may help:
This sounds silly but check to be sure your furnace is plugged in
Trust us, it happens. We have been to many calls where kids have had a hand in unplugging the furnace for whatever reason.
Check if the thermostat is set to “Heat.”
Before you say “Duh!” you should know that a lot of people have discovered upon checking that their thermostat wasn’t set right. It may seem like a waste of time, but it’s better to make sure and double-check. The switch can easily be moved, so don’t take it for granted that it’s set correctly. Give the furnace fan and heat a minute to kick in. If it’s still not warming up, set the thermostat to 90 degrees Fahrenheit and move to the next step.
Check the filter
If your furnace filter is dirty and clogged, the airflow is restrained or limited, causing not only poor performance but also a buildup of heat and pressure in the furnace. This could eventually lead to more trouble. If you have a newer furnace model, it would sense that the filter is dirty and automatically shut down. Another way for you to verify that it’s a filter problem? Listen for a whistling sound. If not enough air is going through the filter to the furnace, it pulls air from anywhere it can, hence the whistling sound.
Check the batteries in your thermostat
If it doesn’t seem to be a filter problem either, you might try putting in fresh batteries in case your thermostat isn’t wired to your house’s electrical system.
Check if the furnace is getting power
Do this by turning on the fan through the thermostat switch. If the fan turns on, then your furnace is getting electricity just fine.
Check the circuit breaker
If you’re still not sure what the problem is, go to your circuit breaker and see if the circuit that controls the furnace is turned off. If your circuit breaker isn’t properly labeled, turn everything off and then back on.
Check your furnace switch
Electricians normally put this on the wall like a regular light switch, so somebody could have mistaken it for one. Turn it on and wait a few minutes before checking if your furnace is finally working.
Check the code
Furnaces built in the ‘90s or later have a window with a light shining through. It not only tells you if the furnace has power, but it can actually tell you what’s wrong. Take note of the flashing light sequence and then you can check on the furnace panel what that code means. It’s good to know this so you can inform the technician and he can have a better picture of what’s going on right off.
Your furnace troubleshooting efforts may end here, with a working furnace. If it is still not turning on, go ahead and give your HVAC company in Walnut Creek a call. The professionals at Hometown HVAC are here to help and will do the best we can to get you up and running as soon as possible.