Top 4 Furnace Problems You are Likely to Encounter this Winter

The winter season in North America is almost here, and you are probably thinking about your furnace. It is crucial to check the condition of appliances that help maintain warmth in your home. As practical as it is, a furnace may encounter hiccups that hinder it from functioning well during the cold season. However, the secret to staying comfortable throughout winter is by keeping in mind predicaments that will prompt your furnace to malfunction. We have compiled a list of the top four furnace issues you will likely experience during this winter.  

Furnace Overheating

A furnace can overheat due to dirty internal components or restricted airflow. Other reasons include short cycles, a mechanical failure, or a broken glass regulator. Age can also be a problem, with most HVAC systems having a lifespan of about 15-to-20 years. Overheating can damage the entire system within a blink of an eye.   Luckily, when you know the signs of overheating, you can easily detect it earlier and call a technician. The primary indications are a strange humming noise and a constant burning aroma. You may also notice that it turns off before one complete cycle is over. It is crucial to fix the problem immediately to avoid damage to the entire system.   Due to the hazardous nature of mechanical and electrical components in the unit, we do not recommend fixing it ourselves. All you need to do is turn off the unit’s power and call a professional HVAC technician. Heating and cooling contractors can quickly diagnose the issue with your furnace. They will repair or replace the components or the whole unit safely and effectively.  

Producing Humidity in Air

A furnace that produces humid air is a red flag, especially if the filters are dirty and the thermostat is not functioning correctly. Several issues can cause this malfunction. One, the pilot light may have gone out if your furnace is older than 15 years. A pilot light is a small flame that aids in lighting the burners in your furnace.   You can follow the manufacturer’s instructions to relight it. However, it is much safer to contact an HVAC professional, especially if you don’t understand the instructions clearly. A trained technician can detect even a more prominent issue like the pilot’s light’s thermocouple damage.   Another cause of a furnace producing blowing humid air is a dirty flame sensor. Wondering what a flame sensor is? Well, it is used in place of a pilot light to keep your furnace burning after it is turned off. When dirty, it can cause blowing of cold air. You can avoid this by ensuring yearly cleaning and maintenance of your flame sensor via furnace tune-ups.  

Energy Bills Rising

Have you noticed an increase in energy bills? Your furnace could have an issue. A dirty filter or lack of maintenance can make your unit work more than it should to function. While most people ignore this rise in bills, it could get worse and more expensive over time if not fixed.   You need to call a technician to inspect your furnace. They will check whether everything is working well and fix what isn’t. In the case of a dirty filter, you can have them clean it or replace the components. If there are other issues, the technician will advise you on repairing or replacing your furnace.   An older furnace can also lead to high energy bills every month due to inefficiency. This calls for a replacement with a modern one.  

Unusual Noises

Furnaces produce some sounds while they operate. For instance, the thermostat makes clicks when it reaches a specific temperature and signals the furnace. As the air travels through the ductwork, you are also likely to hear some noises.   However, any strange noises should be inspected immediately for safety. A loose screw could cause a rattling noise, while a scraping noise predicts an issue with the blower. Various problems can cause a banging noise, with a cracked heat exchange being the worst one.   If you hear any of these noises, we recommend calling an HVAC professional to inspect the entire unit. They can easily detect the cause of strange sounds and offer a solution to prevent future malfunction or breakdown.

photo of furnace repairs

Troubleshooting your Furnace Issues

While most furnace problems need an inspection from a trained technician, you can solve some cases independently. For instance, if it’s not producing enough heat or it’s not turning on, you can run through several furnace tips to fix it.  

Check the Circuit Breaker

Furnaces need electricity to function. In some instances, the circuit breaker may trip and turn off the power in the heating system. Be sure to check your furnace breaker box to ensure it is switched on. If it keeps turning off, you should call a technician to inspect the whole system.  

Replace the Filter

A dirty or clogged filter may have a significant effect on your furnace. It would be best to replace it with a new one if it has been a long since you changed it.  

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat settings could affect the operation of your furnace. Check out to ensure it’s set to heat, the temperature is not too low, and the fun is not on.  

Check the Registers and Vents

Ideally, registers and vents that send warm air to every room in your home should stay open. If registers are closed, you can have a problem keeping a room warm. Based on the location of vents and registers, they can accidentally get closed.   If your furnace is running but no warm air is coming out, check if all registers are on. To open up the vents, flip the switch on the side of the furnace.   When you are uncertain about the state of your furnace, you need a certified technician to inspect it. Aquarius Home Services is a professional HVAC company that offers furnace repair services in Minnesota and Wisconsin.   Do not hesitate to contact us if your unit is overheating, increased energy bills, producing humid air, or strange noises. Our trained technicians are ready to thoroughly inspect your furnace and advise you on what to do.

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