Nashville weather can be very unforgiving for anyone with a dysfunctional HVAC system. The summer can be stinging hot, and winter is freakingly chilly. It can be a frustrating cold night or winter when you can’t warm yourself because of your malfunctioning home’s heating system. Worse still, you may face carbon monoxide poisoning if the issue is not fixed fast.
The CDC reports over 50,000 hospitalizations and 400 deaths annually from CO poisoning. So, you’ll need a quick fix to your heating problems for warmth and overall health. Having a little do-it-yourself knowledge can help you with furnace troubleshooting and repair.
The DIY furnace troubleshooting experience can help you diagnose and fix heating problems early. It will eventually save you money on expensive repairs or replacements. However, if you’re uncertain about DIY, engage expert AC repair Nashville to fix it. It is better dealing with your local expert technicians to get help quickly. And it helps you to avoid mistakes, danger, and accidents.
Let us explore some of the reasons for furnace troubleshooting.
1. No Heating Despite the Blower Fan Working
It’s an airflow problem when the furnace turns on but has no heat, yet the blower fan is working perfectly. It means the heat is being generated, but it does not reach where it is needed. So, there is no heat in the registers. It is a sign of a furnace airflow problem.
To fix the airflow problem and get back the heat, you need to check your air filter. Go to the rack next to the cold air return duct to locate the air filter. But before you go to the air filter, switch off the furnace. The air filter always undermines airflow after collecting so much dust. As a result, it is advisable to change the air filter every 3-6 months.
However, if changing the filter does not fix the problem, something else may clog your ducts. You may need professional furnace troubleshooting to handle the clogging.
2. The Furnace Isn’t Running At All
If the furnace is not turning on, check the thermostat first. You should set your thermostat to “heat” first. Then adjust the degrees a little higher than room temperature or lower to identify the differences.
If the thermostat won’t turn on, the circuit breaker has blown, or the fuse has tripped. So, test the circuit breakers as well. Here’s how you can test your home circuit breakers:
- Open your home circuit breaker panel and identify the circuit controlling your furnace.
- Check if the breaker is in the “Off” or middle position.
- Flip the breaker back and forth to test it manually.
- Then set it in the “On” position.
This procedure should reset the breaker. However, if the trick does not work in your case, either the circuit breaker or the wiring is the problem. A digital multimeter can help you probe whether your circuit breaker is blown or the wiring is faulty.
3. The Furnace Isn’t Giving Enough Heat
You may also need furnace troubleshooting if you’re not getting enough heat from the heating system. You need all the warmth you can get during the winter. In fact, you don’t want to find out that your furnace is not giving off enough heat deep in winter. That’s why all preparations should happen in summer.
So, what could be the problem if your furnace is not giving enough heat as the Nashville summer? It is an airflow problem as the one mentioned in reason no. 1. A slow build-up of dust may be limiting proper airflow. Hence, you need to check and replace the air filters.
If the problem persists after changing the air filters, you seek professional HVAC services in your location.
4. No Gas or Smelling Gas
If you have a gas furnace and a strong gas odor fills your home, it indicates a gas leak. A gas leak affects the effectiveness of your gas furnace, and it’s a health hazard to you and your loved ones. You will need to contact your gas utility provider to fix the problem and treat it as an emergency.
But, before you can engage them, you can inspect the gas line. You can notify them if you find something off your gas line for faster repair.
5. The Burner’s Flame Isn’t Blue
Furnace failures come from contamination. And one of the ways to detect contamination is through the burner’s flame color and uniformity. A quick check-up will help you ensure that the burner is free of debris.
If the burner’s flame is blue and even, there is no contamination. However, yellow flames may indicate a dirty burner. A proper clean-up using a vacuum cleaner can clear the debris.
But, be cautious and switch off power and gas first before embarking on vacuum cleaning. Remember to clean the area around the blower too.
6. Enhance the Efficiency of the Furnace Blower
Another main reason for furnace troubleshooting is to have it operating at 100% efficiency during winter. So, your summer should fix what’s broken, replace what is old or dead, and lubricate the critical moving parts. It should be a routine diagnosis check to maximize the efficiency of your system.
One vital way to enhance your heating system efficiency and durability is to oil the furnace blower. The furnace blower is responsible for drawing heat and spreading it throughout your house. So, you should oil the blower’s motor using the oil ports and the shaft.
7. Fix a Noisy Duct and Furnace
If your heating system components are well oiled yet still noisy, further troubleshooting is necessary. You should worry if your heating system rumbles, squeaks or rattles during operation. Such uncomfortable sounds indicate a mechanical issue.
So, what could be the issue if you have oiled the blower motor and other crucial moving parts?
A noisy duct or furnace indicate limited airflow or a clogged burner. So, your furnace may be running perfectly well, but very loudly for your comfort. If you can pin the noise from the running air in the duct, then duct insulation can solve it.
If the furnace makes odd noises not linked to the duct, carefully check the pilot light. It could have been improperly adjusted due to vibrations. You can also check the burner, belts, or other motors that you could have missed during your oiling.
Here’s how you can differentiate each sound and its source of the problem:
- A rattling sound indicates loose components that need tightening.
- A pop or popping sound is a sign of duct expansion and contraction as it heats and cools.
- Squealing sounds are primarily linked to belt issues. So, the belt that connects a motor and fan could be displaced or worn out from wear and tear. You may need to re-adjust the belt or replace it.
- A grinding noise is the scariest of all. It indicates a motor that is on the verge of breaking down. You may need oiling and replacement of bearings. But, the best way to be sure is to call a professional technician to check it out.
You can describe the sounds to help your technician identify the problem faster.
8. Resolve Pilot Control Issue or Electric Ignition
There is another nuisance common with gas furnaces: pilot light. A pilot light is a tiny flame that ignites the gas below the cover panel of your furnace. Gas furnace operation uses pilot light or electronic control if you do not need a constant flame.
The furnace pilot light won’t stay lit in some gas furnaces with thermocouples. Clogs in the heating system can make the pilot go out. But, the current heating system uses electrical ignition rather than a pilot light on standby.
The DIY steps you can consider when troubleshooting the pilot light include:
- Reset the pilot ignition switch by turning its power on and off.
- Switch the power and gas, then inspect the heating element. If it is cracked or damaged, your furnace igniter needs a replacement.
However, you should use your manufacturer’s manual to ensure you follow all the safety procedures. Failure to follow them may endanger you and your property. Alternatively, you can call an expert service to help you.
9. Confirm the Age of Your Furnace
Although furnace systems can serve you for many years, none last forever. If your heating system is way past the manufacturer’s warranty period, you should expect a fall in performance. As a result, you may not get the maximum heating you could get during a cold night or winter.
You should get a new system if your system has outlived its optimum productivity age. You don’t want to face the Nashville winter with a decaying heating system. Contact your preferred HVAC contractors Nashville for a new heating system and get ready for winter.
The best time to get yourself ready for the winter is summer. And your winter preparation can not be complete without ensuring your furnace system is operating normally. There are many reasons that may need furnace troubleshooting. We have highlighted some of the most practical ones.
But, there could be more signs of a problem that may need your attention. Feel free to contact your preferred expert technician to fix the issues. However, you may need to install a new heating system if it has outlived its productivity age.