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Why Isn’t My Gas Furnace Turning On?

natural-gas-furnace-burnersWhen you’re making your winter plans, both in the short-term and the long-term, you probably make most of them around being in locations where you can receive warmth. In your house, that means a natural gas furnace that works whenever you need it to, that will turn on when the thermostat signals your house requires a boost in warmth.

You probably aren’t planning for the furnace to refuse to turn on at all. You can take steps to avoid this during the fall (arranging for professional heating maintenance is one of the best), but there’s nothing that can stop all potential furnace malfunctions. If your furnace isn’t coming on and you aren’t getting any heat, there are a couple of possibilities for why it’s happening. Some you can correct on your own, but others will require you call for heating repair in Plattsburgh, NY from HVAC professionals.

The pilot light has gone out

If you have an older model of furnace that uses a pilot light to ignite the burners, check to see if the pilot light is still burning. Sometimes a gust of wind might extinguish it, and you should have no problem relighting it. However, if it won’t relight, there may be an issue with the gas flow. Don’t try to fiddle with the furnace any further: call for licensed professionals.

The electronic igniter is broken

Newer furnaces no longer use pilot lights, which help them consume less power. Instead, they use either spark ignitors or hot-surface ignition systems that run via electricity. These systems aren’t immune to failing, however. They can burn out or crack. Whatever reasons the electronic ignition system has stopped working, have professionals look into it.

The furnace has tripped a circuit breaker

This is one of the more common reasons for a furnace shutting down. A gas furnace does use electrical power, such as the ignition system we talked about in the previous section, and the blower motor. The blower motor can overload the circuit and cause it to trip, and this means no power to the igniter either—and a furnace that won’t turn on. Make sure to check the electric panel for any tripped breakers.

The thermostat is malfunctioning or miscalibrated

The furnace itself may be in fine shape. The trouble could be the thermostat that’s supposed to turn it on and off isn’t doing its job. If the thermostat has lost its connection to the ignition system, then the furnace can’t turn on. If the thermostat is reading incorrect temperatures, it won’t know that it’s supposed to turn the furnace on. Technicians can fix the trouble, or they may recommend a new thermostat.

Problems with gas flow or the burners

If the electronic igniter/pilot light is working but the burners aren’t igniting, the burners may be covered with too much dirt, possibly corrosion, or they are not receiving gas flow. Check to see the gas line is open. If it is, there’s something else wrong. Shut the gas off to the furnace all the way and then call for professional assistance.

Red Rock Mechanical, LLC offers furnace and other heating services to Northwest Vermont and Northeast New York.

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