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Easy Tips to Help You Troubleshoot Your Heating System

A malfunctioning heating system can be frustrating to deal with, especially during the winter. To be sure, some heating system problems are quite complex and require the assistance of competent professionals to properly repair. For those, you can turn to Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing if you’re anywhere in the Atlanta area. However, if you know how to properly troubleshoot your heating system, you’ll find that many problems are fairly easy to fix.

Check the Power

If your heating system isn’t operating at all, a good place to start is your breaker panel. In some cases, a sudden power surge can cause the breaker responsible for your heating system to trip, instantly cutting power to the system. Therefore, fixing your heating system may be as simple as flipping the switch to the circuit breaker and waiting for your heating system to start back up. Of course, if your breaker continually trips, there are likely more serious issues going on, meaning that you’ll need to call in a technician for assistance.

Check the Filter

In order to operate properly, your heating system depends on its air filter to capture dust and debris so they don’t get caught in the components. If you don’t replace your system’s air filter on a regular schedule, you could run into problems. A clogged air filter in your heating system affects it much as a stuffed-up nose does you. Nothing seems to work right. If your system has to work too hard to pull in air, it could cause the equipment to overheat until it shuts itself down. To determine if this is the cause of your problems, replace the filter with a new one and then turn your system on again to see if it works.

Check the Thermostat

Your thermostat serves as the brains behind the operation of your heating system. If it isn’t operating correctly, neither will your heating equipment. Check to make sure the connections between your thermostat and heating system are nice and tight so the thermostat can signal the heating system when to turn on. It’s also recommended to make sure your thermostat has a fresh battery so it can accurately sense the temperature and transmit commands.

Check the Safety Switch

All modern furnaces are equipped with a basic feature called a safety switch. This device cuts power to the furnace if it senses the front cover has been removed. In case you’ve forgotten to cut power to the furnace at the circuit breaker, this will prevent the furnace from turning on while you’re working on it.

While this is a nice feature to have, it can cause your system to operate in unexpected ways if there’s a problem with the cover. In most cases, the safety switch is triggered when the cover comes loose due to vibrations that happen during normal operation. When re-installing the furnace cover, make sure to put it in according to the manufacturer’s instructions so you achieve a nice, tight fit.

Check the Blower Fan

If your furnace seems to be making more noise than usual, it could be due to an unbalanced blower fan. Since the blower fan is precision-engineered to operate as efficiently as possible, it can be easy for the fan to become unbalanced if it gets coated in dust. Using a flashlight to inspect the blower fan will allow you to quickly see if it needs to be cleaned. After making sure the power is cut to the heating system, you can use a wet rag to remove the dust from the blades on the blower fan so you can restore its proper operation.

Check the Ducts

In some cases, you may notice your furnace doesn’t seem to blow as much air as it used to. Although this can be a sign of a serious problem that will require professional assistance, a lack of warm air from your heating system could be caused by something as simple as dirty ducts. If your ducts are dirty and filled with dust, it’ll be difficult for air to make its way through them all the way to its intended destination. By having your ducts cleaned, you’ll be able to restore efficient system operation and ensure the air in your home is as fresh as possible.

Check for Blockages

If you discover your ducts aren’t obstructed, your system could still have trouble if some of the return or supply vents are blocked. This is important to check because something as simple as a piece of furniture could restrict a vent and cause problems to occur. If you’ve recently changed the layout of a room, it’s important to go there and check to make sure none of the furniture you rearranged is covering a supply or return vent.

Check the Exhaust Vent

To expel exhaust gases from your home, a gas furnace utilizes an exhaust vent that’s routed through your roof to send the exhaust gases outside. If this vent becomes blocked with leaves or a bird’s nest, your heating system could suffer as a result. If you’re not comfortable getting on the roof, be sure to have a professional inspect the exhaust vent so you can know whether or not this is the issue that’s causing your problem. Fortunately, if your exhaust vent is the culprit, this is an extremely easy fix.

Check the Heating System’s Location

To operate properly, your heating system needs ideal conditions. One condition that must be met is that the area around the heating system is free from debris. This is especially true if your heating system is located in a restricted space such as a utility closet. By checking around your heating system to make sure there isn’t clutter or anything else that could block the airflow to it, you will determine that it can operate reliably all winter long.

Check Your Records

Sometimes, no amount of troubleshooting by a homeowner will be able to determine the exact cause of a heating system’s problems. Instead, ongoing issues could be caused by old age. Over time, the individual components in your heating system will start to wear down and eventually fail. While it makes sense to replace some of these components, others are quite expensive. Consequently, it may be best to simply replace your entire heating system. By keeping accurate records of when your current furnace was installed, you’ll be better able to determine when you can expect to replace it again.

Your Resource for the Big Jobs

When your furnace’s problems go beyond the scope of your own abilities, the professional technicians at Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing stand ready to help you. Our recognitions include the Angie’s List Super Service Award and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. You’ll receive excellent service whenever you reach out to us, and you can be confident that your furnace will be restored quickly so you can go back to enjoying your home. We perform heating and cooling installation, repair and maintenance as well as a full range of plumbing services. For more troubleshooting tips or any assistance you need in Norcross or the Atlanta area, contact us at Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing today.

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