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Do it Yourself: Easy Guidelines for Gas Furnace Troubleshooting

Stephen Rampur Sep 29, 2018
Troubleshooting gas furnace problems is an easy task, and you just need to follow some simple guidelines and instructions...
A gas furnace plays a very important role when it comes to providing warmth in our houses in the cold winter months. Heating requires around 30-35% of the total energy in each house. Using an energy-efficient gas furnace can certainly aid in energy saving which in turn contributes to reduction in energy expenses.
However, a gas furnace would give some problems over time and would need repair. As you would not want your gas furnace to be defunct before the winter, you need to consider some tips and techniques regarding gas furnace troubleshooting.

Gas Furnace Troubleshooting Guidelines

Heat Generation Problems

This is one of the most plebeian issues faced with gas furnaces. This problem can include two possibilities in the working of a gas furnace, such as no heating or inadequate heat generation. No heat generation may be a result of the thermostat being set at low, a defunct thermostat, a bad fuse, tripped circuit breaker or a pilot light problem.
Try to fix this problem by cleaning and examining the thermostat setting. You may have to replace the circuit breaker or fuse if they are defunct. Inadequate heat generation may be a result of dirt in the air filter or air burner. In this case, you need to clean the air filter and reset the gas burner appropriately.

Gas Leaks

Despite the fact that a gas furnace is incorporated with a control shutoff system to prevent gas leaks, there are some possibilities of gas leaks. If you suspect a leak, make a soapy solution by combining liquid detergent with water. Apply the solution to the supply line and valves.
If there is a leak anywhere in the supply line and valves, the soap water tends to bubble at that particular point, after which you can determine the exact position of the leak. You may then fasten the area using a pipe wrench.
In a gas leak issue, it is generally suggested not to turn the gas supply off or fiddle with any part in the gas furnace. You may come out of the house, and contact the fire department or the gas company.

Frequent On/Off Problem

The gas furnace oftentimes switches on and turns off due to dirt in the air filter, or due to some problem in the thermostat or the blower motor. To resolve this problem, examine the thermostat, reset the heat anticipator, and scavenge or replace the air filter.
If the problem is in the blower motor, you may apply a lubricant to the shafts. Frequent gas furnace on and off issues may also be caused due to an extra loose or tight belt. You can even check if the belt is worn out, if it is, simply get it replaced.

Pilot Light Turns Off

A problem in the drafts, an unclean orifice, and dirt in the gas tube are some reasons that may cause the pilot light to turn off. There might even be a possibility of the thermocouple junction which may cause the gas supply to close down. In this case, you need to refer to the instruction manual which comes along with the gas furnace.
If the manual is not available, you may simply relight the pilot light after resetting the pilot setting, scavenging the pilot light opening, or replacing the thermocouple junction.

Other Problems

In a situation when the blower does not turn off, you need to check if the thermostat is on 'fan continuous' control. If the fan setting is not present on the device, a possible cause can be a bad fan limit control switch, which is when you need to consider a switch replacement.
If there is a squeaky noise coming from the furnace, then probably the blower belt is slipping or the bearings in the device need to be lubricated with appropriate oil. Adjusting the pilot light and cleaning the burners thoroughly can also be a troubleshooting step to get rid of the noise in the appliance.
If the furnace is not starting, there can be a few reasons for this. Firstly, check if the power switch is on; or secondly, check if the circuit breaker are not tripped. Few models even have a special switch that turns off the furnace automatically when the panels are taken out from the body.
These gas furnace troubleshooting tips would inform you on how to troubleshoot a gas furnace. However, if you still are not sure about the troubleshooting steps, it is recommended that you consult a certified gas furnace technician.