Unfortunately, Summer has now come to a close. Say goodbye to flip flops, shorts and iced coffee and say hello to hot chocolate, warm boots and rain jackets. We are no strangers to the cold here and as Fall begins to change our weather, the great race begins to prepare for this year’s cold season. We previously discussed the importance of having your furnace serviced prior to the cold front hitting us. If you haven’t gotten yours tuned-up, now is the time! Having your furnace inspected and tuned up before you need it can save you from being “left out in the cold” at the worst of times. Our experienced technicians can spot problem areas and fix them before you end up with an even bigger emergency repair cost. We understand not everyone has the means to get their furnaces looked at every year. So how can you be diligent and watch for signs of a problem on your own, without the help of a professional? Ambient Heating & Air Conditioning have got the low-down on tell-tale warning signs and what to watch out for this cold season.
Signs Your Furnace is Broken & Needs Repair or Replacement
1: Furnace heater doesn’t turn on or want to start – Older furnaces sometimes have difficulty turning on after a long season of being off or often struggle to stay on. If this sounds like your unit, you are likely in need of a repair or replacement. These operational malfunctions are often caused by simple fixes such as wiring that needs to be reconnected or simply a damaged thermostat that needs replacing. Either way, you will need the help of a professional to diagnose the underlying problem.
2: Furnace smells like gas, rotten eggs, burning plastic, sewer or smoke etc – When you first turn on your furnace for the season, it is completely normal for it to emit a fuel smell for a little bit. This fuel smell should dissipate after the furnace has warmed up and is up and going. If you notice any abnormal odor that doesn’t go away after the unit has been turned on for a few, or a strong smell that suddenly appears and doesn’t go away after a short time. You likely have an issue with your furnace. This could be happening for a number of reasons including gas leaks or an excessively dirty unit. This should be cause for concern, we recommend you shut off the unit and call in an HVAC professional to diagnose the cause.
3: Discolored furnace pilot light – Most pilot lights glow blue which indicates it is operating efficiently. Be sure to check on your pilot light from time to time to ensure there are no complications. If your pilot light is glowing a different color, such as yellow, this can indicate a ventilation issue. When carbon monoxide gas doesn’t dissipate as it should, your pilot will begin to glow a different color to alarm you of the ongoing issue. Ignoring signs such as this can negatively affect the health the your family or worse. This can also leave your unit at a higher risk of becoming combustible is not addressed in a timely manner,
4: Furnace not working or heating like it used to – This is perhaps one of the most obvious signs that your furnace is in need of repairs or replacement. If your furnace is not producing heat or only putting out a small amount of heat, insufficient to warm your home. Then you’d better call a professional to have a look and diagnose what the cause of the malfunction is. The usual suspects are leaking ductwork which allows the heat to escape the ducts before it reaches the inside of your home, or faulty thermostats that are lacking in communication with the furnace.
5: Furnace making loud rumbling, grinding, high pitched noise etc – Furnaces are not silent appliances. You should not however, hear whistling, squealing, banging or groaning noises that persist. If you hear any of these noises, call an HVAC professional and describe in detail the noises you are hearing. These could be fan or belt issues, or signal something internally wrong such as loose components.
6: Tripped carbon-monoxide detector going off – Furnaces are equipped with carbon-monoxide detectors that are there to alert you when there is a carbon-monoxide leak. If the detector happens to alert you or go off, immediately turn the unit off and open doors and windows to air out your home. Speak with your gas company and your HVAC contractor to diagnose where the issue is stemming from.
Furnace Heating Repairs, Maintenance & More in Springfield, Granby, Holyoke, South Hadley, Monson Chicopee & Agawam Massachusetts
Keep an eye out on these warning signs and call us if you have any questions or need a diagnosis and repair for your furnace. Ambient Heating & Air Conditioning can handle all of your heating and cooling needs!