Whether it’s a leaky furnace or if you flip the switch to power up your heating system when the weather gets cold and it won’t start, common furnace problems can impact your home at any moment.
Regardless of the cause, learning how your heating system works and a little bit about some typical furnace problems is essential in deciding whether you can troubleshoot on your own or if you need professional support. By watching the furnace's behavior, listening for peculiar noises and checking for signs of damage or blockage, you can narrow down the possible causes.
If you're uncertain about the problem or lack the necessary skills and tools, it's best to call a professional HVAC company like Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc. We can accurately pinpoint the issue and complete the required repairs or maintenance, so we can get your furnace working again ASAP.
Here's more about what causes a furnace to leak water and eight other prevalent heating issues:
1. My Furnace Is Leaking Water
A furnace can leak water for a number of reasons. One possibility is a condensate leak, where the water released during the combustion process is not effectively draining away. This may be due to a blocked condensate drain line or a malfunctioning condensate pump. Another possible cause of water leakage from a furnace is a cracked heat exchanger, which can result in water—as well as dangerous gases—escaping from the furnace.
It is necessary to correct water leaks immediately to prevent more damage to your furnace. Contacting a professional HVAC technician like the crew at Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc is recommended to diagnose and resolve the issue effectively.
2. My Furnace Is Blowing Cold Air/Not Blowing Hot Air
Some possible causes for a furnace blowing cold air or not blowing hot air include a malfunctioning thermostat, a problem with the pilot light or ignition system, a clogged air filter, or a malfunctioning heating element. It could also be your furnace is overheating and shutting off as a safety measure.
If your furnace won’t blow hot air, it's better to contact a professional HVAC specialist to diagnose and fix the problem. They can offer an accurate assessment and advise you on the proper solution.
3. My Furnace Is Not Keeping Up
A widespread reason your furnace isn’t keeping up on a cold day is that your home doesn’t have enough insulation, which can cause heat loss and lower efficiency. Another reason your furnace is falling short is because it’s too small for your home, so it can’t produce enough heat to adequately warm the space. A malfunctioning thermostat or ductwork problems can also result in inconsistent heating.
To correct this, first assess your home’s insulation level and make sure it’s enough to protect your home. Also, check the thermostat to see if it’s set right and the batteries aren’t dead.
If the problem continues, consider calling an experienced HVAC company, such as Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc, who can look over your system, determine the root cause and provide solutions such as furnace replacement, repairing ductwork or changing your thermostat settings.
4. My Furnace Is Not Working
If your furnace is not working, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot before phoning a heating specialist. Check if the thermostat is set right and the batteries are fresh. If the furnace still doesn't power on, check the circuit breaker or fuse box to make sure power is reaching the unit.
If there is power but your furnace won't blow hot air, the problem may rest with the ignition system or gas supply. In that case, it's a good idea to contact an experienced HVAC technician for diagnosis and repair.
5. My Furnace Is Short Cycling
If your furnace is short cycling, that means it is turning on and off multiple times at short intervals as opposed to running in regular cycles like it ought to. This can cause inefficiency, more energy use and potential damage to your unit.
If you think your furnace is short cycling, the first step is to look at your unit’s air filter. Filters should be changed on a regular basis to ensure air flow, so if your furnace air filter is dirty you should exchange it for a clean one—and be sure it is pointing in the right direction. Second, go to your thermostat and look to see if it’s set right and the batteries are good.
If those two things don’t work, it’s smart to call experts like the team at Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc. Quick professional attention will help restore the proper functioning of your furnace and prevent further complications and high energy bills.
6. My Furnace Is Making a Humming Noise
If your furnace is making a humming noise, it often is a sign of problems with the electrical parts or the blower motor. Because of this, if you hear your furnace making a humming noise, it is crucial to take action.
If the noise continues, it is better that you contact a professional HVAC technician.
7. My Furnace Is Making a Loud Noise
If your furnace is making a persistent loud noise, it's important to handle the issue right away to prevent further damage or potential safety risks. One common cause of this is a malfunctioning blower motor or fan, which can generate a grinding or screeching sound. Another possible cause is a loose or worn-out belt that may produce a squealing or rattling noise.
Due to the complexity of furnace systems and potential risks involved, it's best to contact a heating and cooling specialist.
8. My Furnace Is Not Turning On
If your furnace will not turn on, make sure the thermostat is set to the desired temperature, is in heating mode and the batteries are working. Then, check if the circuit breaker or fuse that controls the furnace is functioning properly. If these basic checks don't address the problem, you can examine the furnace's power switch or emergency shutoff switch to verify they're in the "on" position and weren’t accidentally turned off.
If those steps don’t do the job, contact an expert for furnace repair.
9. My Furnace Is Not Igniting
Like a a furnace that will not on at all, a furnace that isn’t igniting can be the result of a plugged air filter or a tripped circuit breaker. So, checking the air filter and assessing your circuit breakers are a good place to start.
Other likely causes of a furnace not igniting include a faulty igniter or malfunctioning flame sensor. Indications of these include the furnace continuously attempting to ignite without success, an absence of heat production or the furnace is making a burning or gas smell. Both of these issues can be simply fixed by HVAC specialists like the team at Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc.