Furnace Problems You May Experience Before Winter Ends
As winter settles in Bucks County, you want to think about the health of your furnace. It is important to be on the lookout for common furnace problems before they break down your heating system entirely. Here at McHale’s, we have put together a list of common furnace problems you may experience before winter ends.
Faulty Pilot Lights: Along with some other mechanical parts, the pilot light could be malfunctioning and causing no heat or intermittent heat. There are two parts that tend to be the culprit for faulty pilot lights: the thermocouple and the pilot tube.
- The thermocouple is a copper wire inside your furnace that detects the heat of your pilot light and lights the gas. It is a safety feature that ensures gas shuts off if it does not detect the pilot light. Sometimes, the thermocouple is bent out of shape or cold, causing it to mis-detect the pilot light, This can cause arbitrary pilot light outages.
- The pilot tube can also be dirty or clogged. When the pilot tube is clogged it can stop or inhibit the pilot light’s ability to function.
Defective Blowers: If you have a demand for heat and the blower is not running, it is important to check the blower motor is functioning. A blower motor breakdown can be caused by old age, faulty bearings, loss of electrical power, or dirt accumulation. If you cannot see any visible dirt and debris blocking the motor function, then call a technician at McHale’s to service the motor.
Poor Electrical Connections: With the passing of time, the vibrations that come with a running furnace can lead to internal wires becoming loose or fraying. These wires and eventually short and cause your furnace to shut off. It can take a bit of time to find the loose wire, but replacing it will fix the issue. To prevent this, schedule regular furnace maintenance to check for damaged parts and ensure the furnace is in working order before winter settles in.
Damaged or Dirty Coils: The coil ensures that the right air supply is being sent through the furnace which heats your home. If for some reason these passages become clogged or damaged, the air flow will be restricted. Furnaces are set to run with a certain amount of air flow, and any disturbance to this level will decrease the efficiency of our furnace to generate heat.
Clogged Air Filters: As a general rule. the filter in your furnace should be replaced every 3 months in order to extend both the efficiency and life of the furnace. You should change it more frequently if there are pets in the home or someone has allergies. Dirty filters reduce the flow of air and reduce air quality in the home. A dirty air filter puts strain on your furnace and makes it work harder. This reduces the efficiency of the unit and costs you money in the long run.
Thermostat Malfunctions: The thermostat is a device that measures the temperature in your home and alerts the furnace when to turn on. If your thermostat is not functioning properly, it can cause the furnace to turn on or off at the wrong time. It may not sense that temperature has been reached and continue to run, or it may not sense the drop in temperature letting your home become frigid. If you notice inconsistent temperatures in your home, consider having your thermostat checked by a professional.
Air Flow Problems: Most of the time, furnaces have two types of air flow. The first one is an incoming source of air. Then, there is a steady flow of air out into the home so that the heat can be evenly distributed. If either one of these airflows is restricted, the efficiency of the furnace will go down. If there are any clogs, blockages, or duct leaks, they should be dealt with quickly so as not to impact the quality of your home heat.
Air Leaks in the Household: If you have air drafts in the household, your furnace will end up working harder to compensate for the loss of heat. Aside from putting strain the furnace, it will also cost you more on your energy bills. You should go through your home and seal any drafty windows, doors, or places you feel air escaping.