How to Troubleshoot a Problematic Gas Furnace


troubleshooting a gas furnaceWe’re poised for another long, cold, Massachusetts winter. The worst thing that could happen is for the furnace to break down, leaving you out in the cold. But don’t panic. It’s not the end of the world, and the problem may be just a quick fix. Before you call in an HVAC technician for repairs, here are a few common problems to help you in troubleshooting a gas furnace.

  • Furnace won’t turn on. When troubleshooting a gas furnace, it’s best to start with the most obvious solutions. First, check the thermostat. Is it on? Does it need new batteries? Try turning it up a few degrees to see if it kicks in. If that doesn’t work, check the furnace itself to make sure it’s turned on, as well as the circuit breaker to be sure it hasn’t been tripped.
  • Not enough heat. The furnace is running, but it’s still too cold. It takes forever to warm your house and you’re wasting energy. The problem may be the air filter. If you don’t change it regularly, the filter can get clogged, restricting airflow and therefore heat. Replace the air filter every one to three months to keep air flowing freely.If this doesn’t help, the problem may be that the burners need adjustment, in which case you’ll need to call an HVAC technician.
  • Furnace cycles on and off frequently. This could also indicate a clogged air filter, as well as possible problems with the motor. It may also be a sign that the furnace is too big for your home. After checking and replacing the filter, oil the blower motor lubrication ports, then check the belt to be sure it’s not too tight, too loose, or damaged. If this doesn’t help, call an HVAC technician.
  • Furnace is noisy. First identify the type of noise. Squealing may mean the belt and motor need oil. A rumbling sound could mean the gas burners need to be cleaned or adjusted by an HVAC professional.

For more tips on troubleshooting a gas furnace, contact our experts at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air.

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