Furnace Repair Checklist
1. Check the Thermostat
To begin, make sure your thermostat is instructing your heater to turn on.
- Swap out the batteries if the screen is empty. If the digital screen is mixed up, the thermostat may need to be changed.
- Make sure the switch is set to “heat” instead of “off” or “cool.”
- Make certain the program is displaying the right day and time and is scheduled to “run.” If you’re having a hard time turning off the schedule, set the temperature by using the up/down arrows and using the “hold” button. This will cause the furnace to turn on if thermostat is causing an issue.
- Increase the temperature setting to 5 degrees warmer than the temperature of the room.
If your heater hasn’t turned on within a couple minutes, ensure it has electricity by moving the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t begin to run, your heater might not have power.
If you have a smart thermostat—for example one made by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting is very model-specific. Check the manufacturer’s website for support. If you still can’t get your Wi-Fi thermostat to operate, contact us at 541-238-2797 for heating and cooling service.
2. Inspect Breakers and Switches
Next, confirm your breaker and furnace switch are on.
- Locate your main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, keep an eye out for a silver metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
- Make sure your hands and feet aren’t moist prior to opening the panel or breakers.
- Locate the breaker labeled “furnace” or “heat,” and ensure it’s reading “on.” If you find that the breaker tripped, it will be in the middle or “off” spot.
- Using one hand, quickly switch the breaker to the “on” position. If the breaker immediately trips and pops back to “off,” don't try to reset it and call an expert from Tri County Climate Control LLC at 541-238-2797 right away.
Regardless of your furnace’s age or brand, it has no less than one ordinary wall switch situated on or close to it.
- Make certain the switch is facing up in the “on” placement. If it was shut off, it could take your furnace up to five minutes to start. (If you’re unsure where to locate your furnace, take a look at your basement, garage or utility closet. It might also be in a crawl space or attic.)
3. Buy a New Air Filter
When we think about heater issues, a dirty, blocked air filter is frequently the top culprit.
If your filter is too grungy:
- Your heating system won’t be able to stay on, or it may overheat from restricted airflow.
- Your energy bills may go up because your heater is working more often.
- Your heating system could stop working prematurely because a dirty filter causes it to overwork.
- Your heating might lose power if an excessively dirty filter results in a tripped breaker.
Based on what type of furnace you have, your air filter will be inside the blower compartment of your heating system, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.
To replace your filter:
- Turn off your heater.
- Pull out the filter and hold it up to the light. If you can’t see light through it, use a new one.
- Put in the new filter with the arrow pointing toward the heater to avoid damage.
Flat filters ought to be replaced once a month, while pleated filters should last about three months. If you have children or pets, you might have to change your filter sooner.
To make changing your filter easier in the future, use a permanent pen on your heater outside or ductwork to show the airflow direction and filter size.
4. Examine the Condensate Pan
Otherwise known as drain pans, condensate pans catch water your heater draws from the air.
If moisture is dripping from within your heating system or its pan is overflowing, follow these guidelines.
- If your pan includes a drain (look for a PVC pipe), make sure that it isn’t clogged. If it needs to be drained, use a special pan-cleaning tablet you can get at home improvement or hardware stores.
- If your pan has a pump, take a look at the float switch. If the lever is stuck “up” with liquid in the pan, contact us at 541-238-2797, because you will likely have to install a new pump.
5. Look for Heating Error Codes
If failures persist, look within your heater’s plastic window to confirm the blower motor’s status. Dependent on the type, the light may also be mounted on the outside of your furnace.
If you note anything except a steady, colored light or twinkling green light, contact us at 541-238-2797 for HVAC service. Your furnace might be giving an error code that needs expert assistance.
6. Clean the Flame Sensor
If your furnace attempts to start but turns off without blowing heat, a dusty flame sensor could be responsible. When this happens, your heater will try to turn on three times before a safety device turns it off for about an hour.
If you feel comfortable with removing the panels from your heater, brushing off your flame sensor is a job you have the ability to do yourself. Or, one of our heating service specialists can do it for you.
If you are confident cleaning the sensor on your own, you require:
- A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
- Section of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
- A fresh paper towel
- Disable the furnace’s power through its wall switch or breaker. If you don’t have an electric gas valve, you will need to turn off the gas in addition.
- Lift off the heating system’s front panel and track the wire to the flame sensor.
- Remove the rod and use your sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth to carefully scrub the metal rod.
- Wipe off the rod with a paper towel.
- Screw the sensor back in.
- Replace the furnace doors.
- Switch the furnace’s power back on. It may go through a series of tests before resuming normal operation. If your heating system doesn’t start, the sensor may need to be replaced or something else may be wrong. If this occurs, contact us at 541-238-2797 for heating and cooling repair assistance.
7. Relight the Pilot Light
If you own an outdated heater, the pilot light could be turned off. To light it, locate the instructions on a sticker on your furnace, or try these guidelines.
- Find the switch on the bottom of your heating system labeled “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
- Push the switch to the “off” position.
- Take a break for at least five minutes to prevent sparking a fire.
- Push the dial to “pilot.”
- Push the “reset” button as you bring the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
- Depress the “reset” button once the pilot light is burning.
If you have followed the list twice and the pilot light still won’t ignite or keep burning, contact us at 541-238-2797 for furnace service.
Examine Your Fuel Delivery System
Try using an additional gas appliance. If it doesn’t work, your natural gas source could be shut off, or you may have run out of propane.