Furnace Repair Checklist
1. Check the Thermostat
To start, ensure your thermostat is instructing your furnace to ignite.
- Swap out the batteries if the monitor is empty. If the digital monitor is mixed up, the thermostat could need to be replaced.
- Ensure the control is set to “heat” as opposed to “off” or “cool.”
- Ensure the program is set to the appropriate day and time and is scheduled to “run.” If you’re having a hard time overriding the schedule, regulate the temperature with the up/down arrows and holding the “hold” button. This will cause the furnace to turn on if thermostat is causing a problem.
- Turn the temperature setting to 5 degrees above the temperature of the room.
If your furnace hasn’t turned on within a few minutes, make certain that it has power by switching the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t operate, your heating system may not have power.
If you have a smart thermostat—such as one made by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting will be determined by the model you have. Refer to the manufacturer’s website for assistance. If you still can’t get your Wi-Fi thermostat to operate, call us at 775-230-7628 for heating and cooling service.
2. Check Breakers and Switches
Next, confirm your breaker and furnace switch are on.
- Locate your main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, keep an eye out for a silver metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
- Make sure your hands and feet aren’t moist prior to using the panel or breakers.
- Look for the breaker titled “furnace” or “heat,” and double-check it’s moved to “on.” If you find that the breaker tripped, it will be in the middle or “off” spot.
- With one hand, steadily turn the breaker to the “on” position. If the breaker instantly trips and pops back to “off,” don't try to reset it and get in touch with a team member from Anderson Heating & A/C at 775-230-7628 immediately.
No matter your furnace’s age or brand, it has at least one standard wall switch set on or near it.
- Make certain the lever is facing up in the “on” placement. If it was switched off, expect your furnace to take up to five minutes to turn on. (If you don’t know where your furnace is located, check your basement, garage or utility closet. It might also be in a crawl space or attic.)
3. Buy a New Air Filter
When we consider heating problems, a dirty, blocked air filter is often the top offender.
If your filter is too dusty:
- Your heating system won’t stay on, or it may overheat from limited airflow.
- Your gas expenses could be higher because your heating system is switching on more often.
- Your furnace may break down prematurely since a dusty filter triggers it to work harder.
- Your heater may lose power if an overly filthy filter causes the breaker to trip.
While it depends on what make of furnace you have, your air filter can be found inside the blower compartment of your furnace, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.
To replace your filter:
- Cut the power to your heating system.
- Take out the filter and hold it up to the light. If you can’t view light through it, use a new one.
- Insert the new filter with the arrow pointing toward the heater to keep damage from happening.
Flat filters ought to be replaced once a month, while pleated filters should last about three months. If you have children or pets, you could have to replace your filter more frequently.
To make changing your filter smoother down the road, write with a permanent pen on your heater housing or ductwork to indicate the airflow direction and filter size.
4. Look at the Condensate Pan
Also known as drain pans, condensate pans catch water your furnace removes from the air.
If water is seeping out of your heating system or its pan has too much water in it, try these recommendations.
- If your pan contains a drain (look for a PVC pipe), double-check that it isn’t full. If it requires draining, drop in a special pan-cleaning tablet you can buy at home improvement or hardware stores.
- If your pan uses a pump, take a look at the float switch. If the switch can’t be moved from the “up” position with standing water in the pan, contact us at 775-230-7628, because you will possibly need a new pump.
5. Look for Heater Error Codes
If failures continue, peek inside your heating system’s plastic window to check the blower motor’s status. Depending on the model, the light could also be mounted on the outside of your furnace.
If you note anything else besides an uninterrupted, colored light or twinkling green light, call us at 775-230-7628 for HVAC service. Your heating system may be communicating an error code that is calling for expert service.
6. Brush off the Flame Sensor
If your heating system attempts to run but switches off without distributing warm air, a dirty flame sensor might be to blame. When this occurs, your heating system will try to start three times before a safety feature shuts it down for around an hour.
If you feel comfortable with taking the panels off your furnace, brushing off your flame sensor is a task you are able to do yourself. Or, one of our heating service specialists is able to finish it for you.
If you want to clean the sensor on your own, you require:
- A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
- Piece of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
- A fresh paper towel
As the next step:
- Turn off the furnace’s power by using its wall switch or breaker. If you don’t have an electric gas valve, you have to shut off the gas along with it.
- Remove the furnace’s front panel and trace the wire to the flame sensor.
- Remove the rod and use your sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth to carefully clean the metal rod.
- Wipe off the rod with a paper towel.
- Screw the sensor back in.
- Replace the furnace doors.
- Restore power to the furnace. It could run through a series of examinations before proceeding with normal running. If your heating system doesn’t start, the sensor might need to be replaced or something else could be wrong. If this occurs, contact us at 775-230-7628 for heating and cooling repair assistance.
7. Light the Pilot Light
If you have an outdated heater, the pilot light could be out. To reignite it, find the directions on a sheet on your heating system, or try these recommendations.
- Locate the toggle on the bottom of your heater labeled “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
- Turn the switch to the “off” position.
- Take a break for at least five minutes to limit the possibility for creating a fire.
- Turn the knob to “pilot.”
- Press the “reset” lever as you move the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
- Let go of the “reset” lever once the pilot light is burning.
If you have used the list twice and the pilot light still won’t ignite or remain lit, contact us at 775-230-7628 for furnace service.
Check Your Gas Delivery System
Try turning on another gas appliance. If it doesn’t work, your natural gas service could be turned off, or you could be out of propane.