Furnaces are complex machines that can break down and there are any number of reasons for why it won’t turn on. When the furnace is not working and the heat isn’t flowing, there is a good chance that one of the following items is the cause of the breakdown.

9 Common Furnace Problems You May Need a Professional to Fix

While some of these issues can be fixed by the average weekend warrior, others are quite complex and may need a professional to assist with. If you have any questions regarding the following furnace problems, please contact Howard Air.

Problem 1: Age of Your Furnace

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Age

A furnace will age just like any machine. With regular maintenance, the lifespan of a forced air furnace is between 15-20 years.

Problem 2: Clogged Filters

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Clogged Air Filter

Clogged filters reduce airflow into the furnace which can decrease the unit’s efficiency. Clogged filters also increase the wear and tear on the unit, because it has to work harder to produce the desired temperatures. Many times, a furnace not blowing air or blowing cold air is doing so because the filter is simply clogged. Be sure to change your filter regularly.

Problem 3: Faulty Heater Thermostats

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Bad Thermostat

The wiring in the heater’s thermostat can come loose causing a short to occur. Shorts can also damage sensors or the electronics within the furnace itself. Thermostats that fail often deliver erratic readings or cause the furnace to cycle on/off more than it should.

Problem 4: Heat Exchanger

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Heater Exchange

Broken heat exchangers are a common reason for a furnace blowing cold air or not blowing air at all. The thin metal of the heat exchanger can become cracked, covered with debris, or rusted from repeated moisture exposure.  It may need to be replaced. 

Problem 5: Ignition/Pilot Problems

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Pilot Light

Pilot lights can easily go out when a draft blows through the furnace room. Ignition can become a problem when the igniter becomes rusted or comes loose. Fortunately, these common furnace problems can be resolved by replacing the igniter and blocking the source of the draft.

Problem 6: Broken Belts

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Broken Belt

The belt inside the furnace blower can wear out and break over time. When it does, it can make it impossible for the furnace to circulate hot air through the duct work. Replacing the belt resolves the problem.

Problem 7: Blowers

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Blower

Parts such as the limit switch within the blower can wear out, which can cause the blower to run continuously. When this occurs, the furnace blows cold air throughout the home. A furnace not blowing hot air should always be checked by a licensed professional.

Problem 8: Power Shorts

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Power Short

Furnaces require a considerable amount of electricity to operate. If an improper fuse is used, it can cause the breaker to trip when power circulates through the system. If that’s not the problem, it’s possible that wires have come loose and the unit is grounding out.

Problem 9: Gas Clogs

Howard Air - Common Furnace Problems Gas Line

Leaks, kinks in the hose and clogs in the system can reduce the amount of gas that reaches the unit. These problems should always be repaired by a qualified repair technician.

Contact Howard Air for All Your Furnace Problems

We invite you to contact Howard Air at 623-201-5153 when your furnace goes on the blink for any reason. We will be happy to come to your home and repair the issue as soon as possible. Our professional technicians can quickly assess the cause(s) of your problem and recommend the appropriate repairs needed to get your heating unit back up and running. Should you need a replacement unit, we can recommend one that fits your home and budget. Please contact us today!