What Are the Most Common Furnace Problems?

Most Texas homeowners only use their furnaces for a limited time each year, so the system is inactive for extended periods. The rapid shift from extended usage to complete inactivity, and vice versa, can damage the furnace. Constant expansion and contraction occur as the furnace’s heat cools, which can result in damage.

In addition to limited use and constant expansion and contraction, there are multiple other causes of furnace breakdown. Some of these causes are discussed below:

1. Cracked Heat Exchanger

This is not only a nuisance for homeowners but also incredibly dangerous. A cracked heat exchanger is caused by the constant expansion and contracting that heating systems experience as they heat and cool. Because heat exchangers are not made of flexible material, they may crack over time.

They can leak carbon dioxide into the air and your home when they crack. Carbon monoxide poisoning can become fatal if not quickly dealt with. This is why many homeowners install a carbon monoxide detector next to their furnaces. Unfortunately, under government regulations, heat exchangers cannot be repaired, only replaced. 

2. Dirty Filters

This is one of the easiest fixes on this list. Dirty filters make it more difficult for your furnace to do its job. A furnace cannot pass air through a dirty filter as easily as it could through a clean filter. Because of this, it will have to work harder and could cause the system to overheat or even fail.

As a homeowner, all you have to do is make sure that you replace your filters once a month when using your furnace. If you are unsure where the filter for your furnace is located, a quick Google search will show you.

3. Slipped Blower Belt

If you hear a squeaky noise from your furnace, it may have a slipped blower belt. This is an easy fix if you know your way around your furnace. If you don’t have prior experience with your furnace, do not attempt to fix it. 

Typically, this is a quick fix for a professional HVAC technician. In some cases, however, the belt may need to be fully replaced if it has worn out to the point of frequent belt slips. 

4. Pilot Light Issues

There are a few causes for a pilot light that won’t stay lit or turn off at all. There could be an obstruction, faulty electrical parts, or a malfunctioning safety switch. Some of these are more serious than others, so it is always a good idea to call a technician if you are having pilot light issues.

Depending on the problem, the technician will repair or replace the part that is causing the problem. You may not even have to deal with pilot lights if you have a newer furnace. This is because some newer models use electricity to light the furnace. 

5. Limit Control Switch Issues

If you notice that your blower is constantly running, there is most likely a problem with the limit control switch. The limit control switch shuts the furnace down when it gets too hot so that it does not overheat or cause any major damage. 

This is why having a working limit control switch is so important. If it does not work, your furnace may not turn off when it should. A constantly running furnace can cause huge problems for all system parts. Call a heating technician right away if you notice this issue.

6. Obstruction

You should always have at least two feet of space around your furnace. It’s best to keep everything away from your furnace. If you don’t keep the area around your furnace clear, you expose your home to a fire risk. 

While no one thinks about vacuuming or dusting their basement or garage, doing this will keep your furnace working efficiently. 

7. Electrical Malfunction

If your furnace is not turning on or doesn’t seem to receive power, then you need to call an HVAC specialist. Do not try to mess with the breaker or any electrical components, as you are putting yourself at risk of electrical shock. 

Electrical malfunctions can typically be solved by rewiring, tightening loose electrical connections, or configuring the breaker. Electrical malfunction, although easy to fix, can be serious. If the furnace happens to receive a surge of power or is incorrectly wired, it could lead to system failure or create sparks.

8. Dirty Burner

Every once in a while, when you turn your furnace on, look at the burner flames. Be sure that the flames are blue and look to be about the same size. If they are not, then debris could be causing burner issues. 

Only clean your burners when the furnace is fully turned off and disconnected. This will ensure that sufficient gas can ignite your burners. The safest way to clean your burners is with a vacuum cleaner. Although, it is even safer to request burner cleaning from a professional during regular furnace maintenance. 

Quality Furnace Repair Services:

All of these issues are preventable with regular furnace repair & maintenance. Scheduling regular maintenance will improve lifespan, increase efficiency and lower your monthly bills. Maintenance will also decrease the risk of unexpected repairs.

If you require a furnace repair, Strittmatter Air Conditioning, Heating, and Plumbing is here to help. Our team is ready to provide reliable furnace services for Flower Mound residents. Dedicated to customer service, our professional technicians go above and beyond to ensure your systems are in great shape. Our technicians have the experience and qualifications to properly and effectively execute various HVAC and plumbing services.

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