No matter how well-maintained your furnace is, it’s bound to encounter some problems throughout its lifetime. Fortunately, many common furnace malfunctions can be easily identified and resolved with the help of a qualified HVAC professional. If you believe you are experiencing any of the following issues, it is best to call in a professional rather than trying to fix them on your own.
1. Pilot Light Issues
The pilot is the small flame that ignites the burner of a gas furnace. This flame is the lifeblood of your furnace, and any issues with it can prevent your unit from safely and effectively heating your home.
One of the most common types of pilot light issues arises when the flame goes out. This could be caused by an issue with the thermocouple, a part of the pilot light assembly that senses heat. A misaligned thermocouple can lead to the pilot light being extinguished.
The color of the flame could also indicate a problem. If the pilot light is burning yellow or orange instead of blue, this could indicate the presence of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that can be very dangerous to your home’s inhabitants, so it’s best to seek emergency assistance if you suspect this is the case.
2. Cracked Heat Exchanger
The heat exchanger is the primary component responsible for producing warm air in your home. Over time, the frequent expansion and contraction of this part can cause it to become cracked, leading to a variety of issues such as poor performance and increased risk of carbon monoxide leaks.
If your furnace is producing strange noises such as rattling or banging, this could be an indication that you have a cracked heat exchanger. You may also notice faint, unusual odors while the furnace is running, soot buildup, or a lack of hot air. A cracked heat exchanger can also result in a carbon monoxide leak, so immediate attention is advised if you notice any of the signs.
3. Blower Motor Issues
Your furnace’s blower motor helps to move the hot air from your heat exchanger to other parts of your house. Over time, the blower motor can develop issues such as a lack of lubrication or a broken belt, leading to decreased performance.
Common signs of a bad blower motor include a high-pitched squealing noise, a noticeable decrease in airflow, and a sudden increase in electric bills. Failing to address these problems can lead to further complications such as an overheated motor or even a fire hazard.
4. Clogged Air Filter
Air filters are responsible for capturing dust and other debris from the air, preventing it from entering your furnace and being circulated throughout your home. If your filter is clogged, it will not be able to do its job efficiently, resulting in decreased air quality and reduced airflow.
A clogged filter can also cause your furnace to overheat, leading to a host of other issues such as an improperly functioning heat exchanger or even a fire hazard. It can also cause the motor to overwork, leading to premature wear and tear. Ideally, you should replace your air filter every one to three months to ensure optimal performance. This is a simple and inexpensive task that most homeowners can do themselves, but don’t hesitate to call a professional if you need assistance.
5. Dirty/Clogged Burner
The burner is the part of your furnace that combusts fuel, producing heat to warm your home. If it becomes clogged or dirty, it can cause a range of issues including reduced performance and an increased risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
You may notice strange odors while your furnace is running, soot buildup around vents, or a decrease in hot air output. If you suspect your burner is clogged or dirty for any reason, it’s best to call in a professional for assistance. They can perform a thorough cleaning and inspection to restore your unit’s performance.
Encountering furnace issues can be frustrating, but with the right help, most common problems can be quickly resolved. If you suspect there is something wrong with your furnace, you can rely on a professional HVAC technician at TS Heat & Air for prompt and reliable service. We’ve been providing trusted heating, air conditioning, and indoor air quality services to residents of Bethany and Oklahoma City for over 40 years, so you can count on us for a job well done. Call us today!