Learning About Residential Furnaces

4 Furnace Problems That Are Worth Repairing

Sometimes when your furnace stops working, your best approach is just to buy a new one. If the furnace is 10 years old and the repair will cost upwards of $500, your money is better spent on a new, energy-efficient model. But this is not always the case. Some furnace issues are actually cheap and easy to repair. Here are four furnace problems that are worth repairing.

Bad Electrical Connection With the Thermostat

There are a couple of wires that run from your furnace to the thermostat. Old systems tend to have two wires, and many newer systems have three. Sometimes these wires may become frayed or disconnected from either the furnace or the thermostat. When this happens, your furnace may stop working completely, or it may stop heating and only blow out unheated air. Reconnecting the wires is a really simple repair that will take your HVAC technician a few minutes and $15 worth of supplies, if that. Even if they have to run a brand new wire, this is simple and worth doing.

A Broken Thermocouple

The thermocouple is a little device that senses when the pilot light is lit and only allows gas to flow into the furnace when it is lit. This device can sometimes get coated in soot, or it might become bent. This can cause your furnace to shut off completely. Luckily, thermocouples are cheap, and it should only take your HVAC technician an hour or two to remove the old one and put the new one into place.

A Dirty Burner

This is not technically even a repair — it's a maintenance issue. If your furnace is not making as much heat as it used to or the flame is orange, not blue, the burner may simply be dirty. Dirt can accumulate over time if you do not change your furnace filter enough. Cleaning the burner is not a DIY task, but it is something your HVAC company can easily do for you.

Worn Ball Bearing

The powerful fan associated with your furnace has a motor, and like most motors, it contains a few ball bearings to reduce friction as it operates. If one of these becomes worn, you may hear a grinding or rubbing sound when the furnace runs. Luckily, this does not mean you need to replace the whole motor, which would be expensive. Your HVAC technician can just remove the ball bearing and replace it with a new one.

Contact a local furnace repair service for more information.