As the days get colder, you’re probably going to start relying on your furnace more and more to keep your home comfortable. That added stress makes it much more likely for problems to occur, which is why you need to keep an eye out for signs that your furnace is in trouble. The faster that you can identify a problem with your system, the faster you can call for repairs and the more damage you can prevent. Let’s take a look at some of the problems that a furnace can run into, and the symptoms they present.
Perhaps one of the most dangerous problems that can afflict a furnace, short cycling is a behavior in which the system turns itself on and off every couple of minutes. This is caused by heat becoming trapped in the furnace, typically due to a clogged air filter. As the temperature rises above established safety levels, the furnace shuts itself down to prevent overheating. Unfortunately, this doesn’t address the root cause of the issue. As soon as the furnace cools down, it will start up again and overheat again. The repeated stresses of overheating and shutting down will shorten the life of the system, and make it more likely that it will break down in the future.
You probably know what your furnace is supposed to sound like, if you’ve used it for any length of time. As such, you should be very wary of any unusual noises that your furnace suddenly starts making. You might have a problem with your burner assembly, your air handler, or any number of other systems, depending on the type of noise. It’s best to call for repairs as soon as you notice these sounds.