How to Troubleshoot a Problem with Your Furnace

Now that winter is almost upon us, are you prepared for its onslaught? Of course, it’s different if you live in the west – but if you live in the Midwest or east coast, you better make sure that all your systems are running as efficiently as possible! We’re talking, in particular, of your furnace – is it in top condition to deal with the worst of the season? If it’s maintained regularly and you make it a point to have it checked annually, you will not likely have any problems. But if you (like many other homeowners) do not get annual maintenance for your furnace, it’s best to know what to do if you encounter a problem. So how do you troubleshoot a problem with your furnace? Let’s find out. 

If your furnace emits unexpected or strange noises…

One of the most obvious signs of a furnace problem is a strange or unexpected sound emanating from it. These sounds can range from a thumping to a clunking noise, and they can also emit squealing or screeching noises. As many experts would tell you, a squeaking sound could be a problem with the blower’s belt. Likewise, when you hear a scraping sound, this could also signify damage to the bearings of the blower. On the other hand, when you encounter a clunking sound, there could be different problems. Remember – your furnace is filled with mechanical components in danger of breaking or loosening up at any time. In cases like these, one of the best things you can do is to seek help from a professional technician and have them look at your furnace. Heating and cooling in Aurora, IL experts can often tell, from a glance, what the culprit is – and work on it accordingly. And if you hear any strange noises, turn off your furnace immediately – it could cause a fire or could result in further damage. 

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If you suspect the furnace of having a gas leak…

It is often normal to expect your furnace to smell like burning once you turn it on at the start of the season. It is usually just dust that has accumulated on the system and is burnt off once the system heats up – and the smell it produces should clear up and disperse in about an hour. But if there is a lingering smell of mold, it could indicate the buildup of debris and certain allergens. If you can detect gas in the air or the smell of something metallic, it is best to take action immediately. Turn off the valve and proceed to open up the doors and windows of the house or property. Contact a furnace repair professional immediately – and evacuate the property. 

Check the electricity, gas, and more 

Remember that a furnace relies on electricity and gas to function; this is why it is often difficult to identify a single culprit. For instance – check the switch connected directly to your furnace – you may have neglected to turn it on. Then check the panel of the circuit breaker. Is the HVAC switch on? It is also possible that the switch has tripped, so your best bet is to turn it on again. 

If no fuel reaches the furnace, the ignitor will not be able to heat the gas. In this instance, check the gas valve outside the property. Then check another gas appliance – if it’s not working, the issue could rest in your connection to the gas network.

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