Gas Furnace Troubleshooting Tips

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The cold weather is coming – are you getting your furnace ready? In addition to scheduling a furnace inspection with Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing, there are a number of other things you can do to make sure your heating system is in tip-top shape before the weather turns cold.

Turning On Your Furnace

Turning on your furnace is simple. Since everything is controlled by your thermostat, all you need to do is flip the switch from COOL (or OFF) to HEAT.  This will automatically switch your furnace on and your AC off.

Changing Furnace Filters

You should have a door on the front of your furnace – open it, and you should find your furnace filter. Make sure you’re changing your filter every month while your furnace is running to maximize airflow and minimize the risk of damage to your furnace.

Testing Your Furnace’s Airflow

This may sound complicated, but it’s really pretty easy. While your furnace is running, walk around your home and feel your heat registers for airflow. If you don’t feel anything, see if there’s anything you can see that might be blocking the register. If there’s not, call Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing to make sure everything is working fine with your furnace blower.

What to Do If Your Furnace Doesn’t Ignite

The most common reason a gas furnace will fail to ignite is the pilot light going out. If your pilot light goes out, shut off the gas cock (located near the pilot). Next, turn the cock to “pilot” while pushing the pilot RESET button. Hold a match up to the gas to light the pilot again.

Keeping Your Vents Clear

Dirty of blocked vents can create airflow problems that will prevent your furnace or heat pump from keeping your home warm during the winter. Have your ducts cleaned once every few years, and make sure they’re not covered by furniture or anything inside. Check outdoor vents too-they can become blocked with ice, which can create a carbon monoxide risk. Shut the furnace off before you remove ice so you can safely clear the vents.

How to Stop Air Leaks and Prevent Heat Loss

Heat loss can lead to big money wasted every winter, so make sure your ductwork, walls, and ceilings are sealed up tightly and insulated. You may also want to put weather-stripping around doors and windows to prevent air leakage.

What to Do If You Smell Gas

If you ever smell gas coming from the furnace, evacuate immediately and call 911, the gas company and Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing, in that order. Be sure to avoid lighting matches or using any electrical appliances until you are safely away from the area.

Winter may be coming, but if your furnace is in good shape, you don’t have to worry about it! Try all these furnace maintenance steps for yourself, and if you want a more comprehensive furnace inspection, call Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing!

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