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Winter Isn’t Done Yet! Watch for Furnace Issues

woman-shivering-in-winterPast mid-February isn’t the end of winter, even with March around the corner. March is a notoriously unpredictable month—so much so people can’t even keep straight whether the saying is “March enters like a lamb and leaves like a lion” or “March enters like a lion and leaves like a lamb.”

So even with some occasionally warmer days popping up in the future, you shouldn’t let slide the care of your home’s furnace. If you think you need furnace repair in Plymouth, IN or elsewhere in our service area, don’t hesitate to call. You never know how much longer you need to your furnace working.

Here’s some of the warnings to look for that will tell you to call for our help to repair your furnace.

Uneven heating and cold spots

Family members start to say things like, “My room’s freezing! Can you turn up the heat?” But the furnace is already running, and the thermostat is set at its usual temperature. Something’s wrong, and it may be a furnace that’s losing heating power. The rooms the farthest away may start to receive less heat through the ventilation system. The trouble could be with the blower fan, or not all the burners igniting. There might even be trouble with the ductwork.

Short-cycling

This is a term for when a furnace turns on and off rapidly over a short time, such as three or four times during an hour. Furnaces aren’t designed to run in short spurts like this, but to go through a complete heating cycle. Short-cycling often means the furnace filter is clogged up, causing the furnace quickly to overheat and activate the limit switch that shuts it off. Another possibility is the thermostat is miscalibrated.

The circuit breaker keeps tripping

Gas furnaces need electricity to run. Burning natural gas creates heat, but that heat won’t go anywhere unless there’s electricity to power the blower fan. If the blower motor is placed under too much strain because of loss of lubrication, or extra dust and dirt, it can cause the motor to draw on too much electricity, leading to a circuit breaker tripping.

Strange noises

Don’t ignore a change in the regular sounds a furnace makes when it’s running. When a new, odd sound appears, it often means there’s a mechanical malfunction somewhere in the system. Clanging and banging can mean the blower fan blades are bent and striking the casing. Shrieking warns that the blower fan motor’s bearings are wearing down, which means the motor may suffer damage. Rattling could point to loose parts somewhere. And a clicking sound soon after the blower motor turns off can indicate cracks in the heat exchanger—a safety issue!

Heating costs have abruptly risen

If you’re paying more at the end of winter to heat your home than you did at the start—even if you haven’t used the furnace more—the increase on your utility bill may be the fault of a malfunction. Almost any type of furnace trouble can place additional stress on it so that it drains more power. It takes a professional to diagnose what’s wrong and have it fixed.

Collier’s Heating & Air Conditioning serves Warsaw and North Central Indiana. For over 30 years, “A Company You’ve Grown to Trust!”

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