Solved! This Is How to Gear up a Furnace That’s Not Turning On
Getting an uncooperative furnace up and running is easy to do if you know where and how problems are likely to occur. Attempt these furnace troubleshooting tips before you call a professional technician.
Q: We recently moved into our home and at present that it’s getting cold, nosotros’ve noticed that the furnace isn’t turning on. We know we need to get it working earlier the pipes freeze only accept no idea what the problem is. Can we troubleshoot the issue of a furnace not turning on rather than calling a technician?
Cold firm aside and chattering teeth aside, a malfunctioning dwelling furnace could lead to plush damage—including, equally you mention, pipes freezing. Frigid temperatures or the resulting condensation can potentially damage windows, and information technology’s possible for a business firm that’s unheated through the freezing winter months to even succumb to structural damage.
Getting your furnace going during cold atmospheric condition is a high priority and should be dealt with immediately, simply it doesn’t necessarily hateful that you’ll take to call a maintenance specialist. If your furnace quits working at that place are a number of solutions to furnace issues that you lot tin can undertake, including setting the thermostat and, if you lot have a gas model, reigniting the furnace’southward pilot lite. Read on for some furnace troubleshooting tactics to endeavour before calling a service technician.
Make sure the thermostat is on.
The most obvious solution for a furnace non turning on is frequently disregarded when troubleshooting heating systems: Many folks neglect to check the thermostat, the office of your heating system that assesses the room’due south temperature and allows you to fix and adjust the desired temperature. A thermostat is typically installed on 1 of the main walls in your home, a little higher than a lite switch.
If your thermostat won’t turn on, the device can’t tell the furnace when to turn on. So, if you lot have a programmable thermostat, check to ensure the display is agile, the furnace is on, and the unit is ready to heat. If you have a manual thermostat, notation that during dusting or other household cleaning chores, the switch tin can accidentally get knocked into an “off” position. Once you’ve determined that the thermostat is on, turn the heat upwards to a temperature that typically causes the furnace to switch on; this temperature can vary from thermostat to thermostat. If the heat doesn’t kick on later on a minute or so, increment the temperature setting significantly as you continue troubleshooting.
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Ensure the gas is turned on.
Any gas furnace will accept a valve or gas erect located within six anxiety of the unit of measurement. Furnace valve designs vary, but they often include a trivial deejay with a small handle or lever on it. Some gas valves can expect like lilliputian boxes, while nonetheless others tin can resemble a lever nigh the size of your index finger (oft brightly colored).
The valve may have been closed past accident or past someone working on the furnace who forgot to turn it back on. While valves tin vary depending on make or manufacturer, a gas valve will typically be in the open position—which means at that place is gas flowing through the pipe—if the handle on the valve is parallel with the pipe. If the handle is perpendicular to the pipe, the valve is probably airtight. To open it, turn the little handle so that information technology’s parallel to the piping.
If the furnace still doesn’t kick on once the valve is open, cheque another gas appliance in the firm, such as a stove or fireplace, to see if it’s still working. If the other gas appliances don’t plough on, you may not take gas coming into your house. This can be the result of crews working somewhere on the gas line, or there might be a gas leak, a break, or even a blockage in the line. A gas leak can be a dangerous state of affairs, so if you doubtable this to exist the case, call 911 immediately and follow their instructions.
To assess the situation, go outside and cheque the street-side valve then the internal house-side valve to run into if they are on. If they are not on, turning the valve to the open or “on” position (every bit described to a higher place) should get gas flowing into your home over again. If your furnace and other gas appliances still won’t plow on, contact your utility company to observe out if they’re working in your area or if at that place take been any service interruptions. If that’s non the case, cheque the status of your account. Whether due to a technical glitch or human oversight, a missed or incomplete utility payment can result in a service intermission.
RELATED: How to Locate Your Home’south Gas Close-Off Valve
Bank check the furnace’s power switch position.
Sometimes the reason for a furnace not turning on is considering it’due south simply turned off. Locate the power switch on the furnace itself, which is likely on a nearby wall, or even on a ceiling or floor joist near the unit. It will often wait similar a regular light switch, and it might or might non be labeled. Typically, but not e’er, the “on” position is up, although this will depend on the installation. It’s easy for someone unfamiliar with the house to accidentally turn the furnace off, mistaking it for a light switch. Flip this switch back to the “on” position and await for the unit to start upwards. Some furnaces can take several minutes before they resume functioning.
Replace an air filter.
A chock-full air filter volition stop a furnace from heating properly. Over time, an air filter can become chock-full with dust, hair, or other household debris, making your furnace less efficient. As well, restricted airflow tin can cause the estrus in the heat exchanger to continually increase. Every furnace has limit switches that activate when temperatures exceed a designated point, shutting down the furnace. To go on the unit functioning effectively, furnace air filters should exist replaced every 1 to 3 months, regardless of whatever heating or airflow issues.
To find the filter, locate the spot where air flows into the furnace when it is working. Slide the old filter out and examine the side for a model number and size and then you know which replacement filter to buy. When replacing the filter, check the frame for an pointer mark, which indicates the direction the air is flowing. As you lot slide the new furnace filter into place, be sure to position the arrow and so that it faces the furnace.
RELATED: Modify Filters Frequently to Optimize Furnace Efficiency
Check the ignition sensor.
If you lot’re confident in your DIY skills, you lot may wish to clean the ignition sensor (aka flame sensor) on your furnace. The ignition sensor is a safety device that detects whether the furnace is burning gas. The sensor uses the increasing temperature in the furnace to place flames. If the sensor cannot discover a flame, it will shut down the furnace to prevent unburned gas from escaping. Rest buildup can stop the flame sensor from operating correctly. Cleaning it can allow the furnace to turn on and part properly. If this troubleshooting tactic feels across the scope of your DIY skills, information technology may exist time to call a pro. To get an idea of what’s involved, consider these basic instructions for cleaning the ignition sensor:
- Before attempting to clean the sensor, shut off the furnace. A furnace doesn’t have an on-off switch, then to turn it off, find the gas valve that controls the gas going into your furnace, and plow the little handle on the valve to the closed or “off” position (perpendicular to the pipage).
- Then, expect for a porcelain base of operations with a pocket-size metal rod in front of the pilot lite inside the furnace. Use a screwdriver with the appropriate head to loosen and remove the screw beside the sensor and then slide the dirty sensor out from its electric current position.
- Gently make clean the metal rod with a wad of steel wool or a make clean, direct-edged pocketknife to remove whatsoever buildup. Rub very carefully and patiently; you don’t want to disassemble the rod from the base of operations.
- In one case make clean, slide the sensor dorsum into position, replace the screw that holds the sensor, and turn the gas back on.
If after trying these solutions your furnace still doesn’t turn on, information technology may be time to consider calling in a furnace repair professional person. Bank check online directories to find repair technicians in your neighborhood. Your local home renovation shop can also be a bang-up resource for finding furnace repair technicians.
RELATED: Is Information technology Time to Replace Your Furnace?
When your furnace doesn’t plough on, information technology might exist tempting to throw your hands in the air and reach for the phone to call in the large guns. However, before y’all turn to a pro, have a deep breath, straighten your shoulders, and try out some DIY strategies of your own. The trouble could exist as unproblematic as a dirty filter or a flipped switch, or peradventure—oops—the dog ate the gas bill.
Run through our list of fixes, and if the furnace still isn’t turning on, and then you can call in the experts.
FAQs About What to Do When Your Furnace Won’t Turn On
Making sure that the furnace turns on when it’s needed is among the nearly of import responsibilities a homeowner faces, and it’s one you want to become right. So, if you still take a few questions about this topic, read on to learn more than.
Q. How does a furnace work?
In a gas furnace, modest flames are created by the burning of natural gas or liquid propane gas in devices chosen burners. Fans blow the heat emitted by these flames into a duct arrangement that distributes heat throughout the home.
Q. How do I reset the power on my furnace?
Your furnace unit might have a reset button fastened to it. Locate this button and press and hold for several seconds, then release. Alternatively, at that place might exist a switch located on the wall near your furnace. If this doesn’t work, you may have to reset the circuit billow associated with the furnace.
Q. Where is the reset button on the furnace?
Furnace designs vary by manufacturer, so your all-time bet is to consult the user’s manual to locate the furnace reset push for your particular unit of measurement. It is often attached to the side of the blower motor, which is inside the blower compartment. (If you don’t have the transmission handy, observe the model number on the furnace and search online.)
Q. How do I know if it’s my thermostat or furnace that’s broken?
The outset step is to check the display on your thermostat. If it is blank or doesn’t respond when you attempt to make adjustments, it’s likely the thermostat that’s broken. If the display responds, but the furnace does non, troubleshoot the furnace every bit outlined above.
Q. How practice you know if the furnace airplane pilot light is bad?
If air is coming out of the vents, but the air is not hot, the pilot light could be out. In your furnace unit, find the panel that hides the airplane pilot low-cal and open information technology. If you don’t see a little blueish flame, the airplane pilot light is out.