When winter rolls around, the last thing you want to do is worry that your heating system can break down at any moment, right? Of course, the best way to avoid this is by scheduling routine maintenance for your heater. During this service, our technicians comprehensively inspect and clean your system, noting any signs of disrepair and alerting you to them.
If you skip maintenance, or if you haven’t had maintenance done yet this year, then you’re at a higher risk for sudden system breakdowns and higher repair costs. But the sooner you repair your system, the lower your monthly bills will likely be. So, spotting signs of a heater in disrepair is a good idea. How do you do so?
Well, listen and look for these 5 Indicators:
- You Hear Strange Noises Coming from the Cabinet or Vents
What makes it hard to detect heating system problems sometimes is that it can be pretty easy to ignore “problems” that don’t seem to be impacting the functionality of your heater. An odd noise from your furnace cabinet may not seem like a big deal, but it can be a sign of a much bigger issues.
For instance, a buzzing sound may indicate something electrical is going on, while a screech can signal a worn-out belt that can break at any moment. A pop or banging noise could indicate dust and dirt burning off the gas jets of your system. Unfortunately, this rattles the heat exchanger, and can damage it and leave you with dangerous carbon monoxide exposure.
- You’re Spending Too Much to Heat Your Home
True, you shouldn’t be too alarmed that your energy bills go up as winter progresses and you use your heater more and more. This means your heater is doing its job. But if you seem to be paying far more than you did this same time last year, or more than your neighbors are paying, then something is causing the system to not work as efficiently as it once did and this should be checked out.
- You Can’t Get the Thermostat High Enough
Or at least, it doesn’t seem as though you can. If you’re turning up the thermostat higher and higher, yet still don’t feel warm, then you have a problem. Chances are, this problem has nothing to do with the thermostat. Your heater is running nonstop to try to meet your desired settings, and that causes components to wear down quickly, potentially leading to premature replacement.
- You Notice Sporadic Cycling of Your Heater
This process is called short-cycling, and it’s something that you should never ignore. When a central HVAC system short-cycles, it’s not running long enough to complete a full heating or cooling cycle. Worse than that, it’s using a lot of energy every time it has to start, stop, and start again.
- The Pilot Light of Your Furnace is Yellow
No, that’s not the color the flame is supposed to be—at least, not when your furnace is operating safely! The light at the burner should remain blue, otherwise there might be substances present on the burners that are interfering with system operation and safety, like rust. If you notice flame discoloration, be sure to shut off your heater right away and give our pros a call.