If your home has a gas furnace, it’s important to learn how to check the unit for potential problems to prevent unexpected breakdowns or inefficient operation. Troubleshooting your gas furnace can help you to avoid costly repair bills that may arise if potential issues are left undiscovered.
Turning On Your Gas Furnace
A gas furnace is typically operated through the same thermostat as the air conditioner. This means that when the weather turns cold, you can simply turn your thermostat to the ‘warm’ or ‘heat’ setting and then adjust the temperature to your liking.
Inspecting and Replacing Your Furnace Filter
Before beginning, it's important to turn the power off to the unit. Many furnaces have electrical components near the filter. Open the cover of the unit and then remove the filter. You can use a vacuum to clean the surface dust from a plastic filter, then simply wash it and dry it before replacing it. Always operate the furnace with a filter in place. You will need to replace a cardboard filter every few months, or as recommended by the filter manufacturer.
Check every room in your home by feeling for the airflow that comes from the vents. If airflow is insufficient in some areas of your home, you should have a technician check your air ducts to ensure they are properly sized for air delivery throughout your home.
Furnace Troubleshooting Checklist
Cleaning the system every couple of years helps the unit run more efficiently and last longer. During an annual heating system inspection your technician will lubricate the furnace ports and bearings, reducing the amount of energy the unit needs to operate. Your technician will also clean the furnace burners if they appear dirty.
Cleaning the vents and ducts will remove blockages that can interfere with heat flow in the home. In the winter, ice can block the outdoor vents. Make sure to turn off the unit before you attempt to remove the ice.
Sealing Air Leaks To Prevent Heat Loss
If you notice air leaks emanating from your system, use caulk to seal off any gaps. In addition, placing weather stripping around doors and windows will keep your home from losing heat, which makes your furnace run more often.
Ceiling FansCeiling fans can help your heating system operate more efficiently by distributing warm air down into the living space. During cold weather, set the ceiling fan to turn in a counter-clockwise direction. When the weather is warmer, set the fan to turn in a clockwise direction.
Have questions about your home's heating system? Call the pros at Grand Lake Plumbing & Heating.