How To Know Your Furnace Needs Repair

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How To Know Your Furnace Needs Repair

broken furnace

If the world were an ideal place, you would never have a broken furnace. Instead, you would plan for it to be serviced every year. This is necessary to ensure that it is functioning properly.

Unfortunately, life is unexpected. There are other factors that come into play that can prevent an annual servicing from occurring.

Also, even if you do have your furnace regularly serviced, it can still break in extreme weather conditions or from age.

When something seems wrong with your furnace you should take stock of a few important details. There are ways to know whether the problem is serious, or it can be handled on your own.

Keep reading to find out telltale signs that you have a broken furnace on your hands and need to call a professional.

Run Down a Checklist

When you’re examining your furnace the first thing that you should check for is that the pilot light is still on. If it isn’t, you will need to reset it using a long lighter. Without the pilot light, your unit will not be able to kick on when the thermostat triggers it. If it’s out, call a professional just to be safe.

The next thing that you need to check your furnace for is whether or not the thermostat is turned up. Most furnaces contain a thermostat that is used to gauge the air temperature and trigger the equipment to turn on and off. If it’s set to the wrong temperature, then your home won’t be heated.

Finally, you should check to ensure that there aren’t any blockages in your pipes. Sometimes there can be a build-up of dust and debris in the pipes of your furnace, especially if you don’t regularly maintain it.

When to Seek a Professional About Your Broken Furnace

Once you have performed those few basic checks, you will know whether or not you can handle your broken furnace on your own. You may decide to call a professional for help.

But if you are having trouble deciding whether or not it is necessary, there are several indicators that hiring a professional is essential.

If any of the following situations are occurring in your home then you should obtain assistance as quickly as possible to get your broken furnace working properly again.


The purpose of your furnace is to produce heat and when this stops happening your concern is warranted. You should immediately check that it has fuel available. If a furnace is not able to reach a fuel source, the unit will shut down.

Fortunately, adding fuel to your furnace is an easy fix that you can perform on your own. But if your furnace appears to have fuel and still isn’t working, then you may have a large blockage in your pipes.

If you have checked for blockages already, and your furnace also has fuel, then you will definitely need professional help. Something is wrong with your machine that can’t be fixed with simple surface work. You may even need to purchase a replacement.

Strange Noises

Yes, it’s true that furnaces regularly make strange noises as part of their day-to-day operation. But, that is not what we are talking about here. You will know what is irregular noise for your equipment since you hear it kicking on and off every day.

One such irregular nose you may hear is a clicking sound. This sound will occur while the furnace is starting up and suggests that you may have an issue with your pilot light. The clicking comes from the inability of the pilot light to spark.

If you suspect that this might be the problem, then you should contact a professional for help. You may be able to relight your pilot light on your own. But, if there is a serious problem with it you may need electrical work to be performed.

It can be dangerous to attempt to correct a pilot light yourself. It is possible to injure yourself or cause a fire.

Another noise that you may hear is a booming sound. If you hear this then you are most likely listening to the sound of dirt moving across the burners of your furnace. Over time dirt can accumulate and needs to be eliminated regularly with annual cleanings. If this care doesn’t take place, then the machine may begin to make a booming noise.

If so, you will need to hire a professional. This is an issue that will require disassembly to correct.

The final sound that you may hear is a rattling noise. This would indicate that there is something loose or broken inside your machine. If that is the case you will want to have your equipment inspected quickly. The problem may be slight now but with additional use, it can become a costly issue.


One of the easiest ways to know that your furnace is operating improperly is when the cost of operating it begins to creep up. This rise will be steeper than your usual winter increase.

If your bill starts to creep up then you should call a professional immediately. You don’t want to be paying extra to heat your home any longer.

Air Pressure

Regardless of the amount of work that your furnace is putting in, you should have a consistent air flow from the ducts in your home. The odd variation is nothing to be concerned about.

But, an extreme drop in pressure on a consistent basis could signal that you have a problem with your blower fans, a leak in one of your blower fans, or parts inside your furnace may no longer be working properly.


Finally, a broken furnace may put off a smell that you are unfamiliar with. If that happens then you should get help urgently and discontinue use of your furnace until you know it is safe.

The Bottom Line

The best way to ensure that your furnace stays working through the winter is by having it checked annually.

If you don’t, or if something is faulty, then you may notice your furnace starts making strange noises. You could also see a large rise in your heating cost.

If you have noticed any of these signs, or the others mentioned above, then you should contact us at Cool Care Heating and Air today.