A well-running furnace is quite easy to take for granted. When you turn up the thermostat, the furnace instantly kicks on and begins pushing heat out of the vents. You never have to refill it with fuel or lubricate its moving parts. Furnaces generally only need a bit of maintenance, such as filter changes and duct cleaning, once a year. As a result, you might be blown away when your furnace starts acting up out of the blue. Here are a few furnace faults and reasons why the problems occur.
Intense buzzing or tapping noises coming from your furnace indicates that parts are out of alignment inside. As internal parts move and spin, bearings inside the case wear down. Once the bearings reach the end of their service limits, the moving parts will start to rattle around in their housings.
The most common parts susceptible to this problem are the blower motor and heat exchanger. You can usually have the bearings replaced with new ones to solve this problem. However, if you neglect to have the work done in a timely manner, damage to the moving parts could occur.
Modern gas furnaces feature a small window near the igniter that houses a series of lights. The light usually turns on when your furnace's filter, igniter and other components are in line and ready to go. If any of those components are not correctly installed or activated, the light may turn from green to red. In addition, the red light may blink in a particular sequence to give you the fault code.
Furnace fault codes directly correspond to the service request assigned by the manufacturer. You can compare the code to the fault list in your owner's manual or simply relay it to your furnace repair professional.
Your gas furnace pipes fuel into the burner assembly where it is turned into flame using the igniter. If the igniter fails to light, the gas will continue flowing out of the pipe. Eventually, you'll start to smell the gas as it fills the air in your home. Unburned natural gas smells just like rotten eggs.
If you detect this smell in your house, cease trying to figure out where it's coming from and leave the premises immediately. Call the fire department and do not allow anyone to approach the house until officials clear the premises. Using electronic components or items that produce an open flame could result in a serious explosion.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, your gas furnace could fail to receive the right amount of gas to ignite. If this happens, the igniter will continually click in an attempt to create a flame. If this happens, turn off your furnace and investigate the cause of the fault.
You should check with your gas company to make sure your payment went through and that gas is turned on for your home. Sometimes, roadwork and nearby construction requires turning off gas utilities for a short amount of time. You'll usually receive advanced notice for this requirement, unless authorities are dealing with an emergency involving the gas lines in your area.
Performing The Repairs
Once you figure out the main symptoms of your furnace malfunctions, contact a repair technician from a place like Allied Air Conditioning & Heating Corp to schedule an inspection and repairs. Furnace technicians appreciate hearing all of the symptoms you noticed before making the call. The symptoms help quickly pinpoint the exact problem by ruling out other possibilities from the get-go. Most of the above issues can be fixed by replacing a small part, such as the igniter, with a new one from the manufacturer. If you have to wait for the part to arrive, you can temporarily use a portable space heater to warm your home.