Finding Plumbing Issues Early

4 Early Warning Signs Of Furnace Trouble

by Chris Bowman

When something goes wrong with your furnace, it's good to get repairs before major damage occurs. However, you may be wondering how to know if your furnace is malfunctioning when it's still running. Here are some things to watch for.

1. Your Furnace Doesn't Run As Long As It Should

When your furnace kicks on, it should run for several minutes before it kicks off. If it seems like your furnace shuts off too soon and turns on and off more frequently than it used to, your furnace might be shutting itself off early as a safety mechanism.

Irregular operation could be a sign of overheating or a problem with the ignition that's causing the furnace to turn off. Call a furnace repair professional to diagnose the problem and make repairs so the stress on your furnace doesn't cause damage to furnace parts or drive up your power bill.

2. There Are Rust Flakes Around The Ignition

It's good to make a quick check of your furnace once a month when you change the filter. Look for rust flakes around the ignition area as these indicate the burner is dirty and needs to be cleaned. Otherwise, the furnace may start to malfunction.

Also, check the flame. It should be a blueish color and be steady. A yellow flame is another sign of a dirty burner, and that can be a serious problem for your furnace. Call a repair professional to pull out the burner and check for problems after cleaning.

3. Your Power Bill Is Suddenly High 

If you get a sudden high power bill and there's no obvious reason for it, consider a problem with your furnace. It's easy to block out the furnace since you live with it every day, and you might not notice if it's running continuously and driving up your bill.

A furnace that runs too long might be dirty or have problems with the wiring or other parts. Call a furnace repair service to check the furnace over and make repairs if they're needed to bring your power bill back to normal and to relieve stress on your furnace.

4. You Hear Odd Noises

A malfunction in your furnace can cause odd noises and unusual odors. The smell of burning plastic or burning rubber could indicate a serious situation that needs immediate repairs. Hissing, screeching, and clattering sounds are not normal and are signs something is wrong with the furnace. Having repairs done promptly is important whether your furnace is electric or gas.

Damage to a gas furnace is particularly serious if it causes a crack in the heat exchanger that allows carbon monoxide to escape. Prevent serious damage by having furnace repairs done as soon as you notice early signs of trouble.

For more information, contact local professionals like those found at Washam Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning.