A furnace that won’t heat isn’t really of any use to you. As such, it behooves you to get it fixed as soon as possible. Now, you probably don’t have the tools or the expertise to actually repair your furnace yourself. However, there are a few steps you can go through before calling a professional technician. At the very least, you can eliminate some possible causes of the problem. Let’s take a look at what you can do if your furnace isn’t providing heat.
Check the Thermostat
The thermostat is the core of your heating system, responsible for actually deciding when your home receives heat and for how long. As such, a malfunctioning thermostat can disable the entire system, even if the furnace itself is perfectly healthy. Have a look at the thermostat and make sure that the settings and temperature are correct. If the temperature is obviously incorrect, or anything else is displaying strangely, then you may have a thermostat issue.
If your furnace is actually on, but not providing heat, listen for the sound of the furnace’s air handler. The air handler is the part that actually circulates air throughout the house, and you should be able to hear the fan blowing when the furnace is on. If not, then you have an issue with your air handler. It is possible that the motor is burned out, or that some other kind of electrical shortage has deprived the handler of power. Either way, you should shut your furnace down and call a professional if you don’t hear the fan blowing. Otherwise, heat can become trapped in the furnace and cause it to overheat.
Check the Ignition
Faulty ignition is a very common cause of furnace failure. In older furnaces, it’s easy to check if the ignition is working. Simply look for the pilot light burning underneath the furnace. If the light is out, then that’s probably the source of your problem. Newer furnaces are more difficult to assess, as they use electronic ignition systems with little or no visible signs of malfunction. Even so, you should try starting your furnace while watching the burners to see if they ignite. If not, then you probably have an ignition problem.