It may almost be spring, and we may not get as severely cold weather in our part of the country as others, but having a fully functional and efficiently operating furnace is still pretty important. This is why, whether you had fall maintenance done or not, it’s important to know if your furnace needs any repairs.
Taking care of repair needs now instead of waiting for next fall makes it less likely to have emergency repair needs when you need your furnace system the most. Of course, this also requires you to know when you actually have repair needs, right? Read on to learn how to tell if you might have some end-of-season furnace repair needs.
The Heater Is Making Weird Noises
There is unfortunately no such thing as a completely silent furnace. But, it’s always good to know what sounds are considered “normal” and what sounds aren’t. For instance, you may hear a slight rattling coming from your ductwork as the system starts up and the temperature fluctuates, and of course you’ll hear the air rushing through your vents into your living space.
But pretty much anything outside of the normal day-to-day sound you hear should be cause for concern. This can include really loud rattling, sealing or screeching, hissing, banging, to booming.
The Furnace Is Producing Weaker Airflow
Your furnace is designed to provide a steady stream of warmth throughout your living space. If you’ve discovered that the airflow coming from the vents or the air handlers is weaker than usual, it’s a definite sign that something is amiss. It might be something as “minor” as a duct that needs repair or sealing, but it could be something much more serious.
You Have Hot or Cold Spots in Your Home
This can be the sign of ductwork damage, again, or it can be short-cycling that’s causing this issue. Short-cycling is the process where a furnace (or air conditioner) cycles on and off rapidly, reaching the desired temperature on your thermostat too quickly.
A furnace is designed to run in 15-minute increments, 2-3 times an hour. If it’s more frequent than this or if the run-times are shorter than 15 minutes, it means your system is, in fact, short-cycling and needs to be inspected by a professional.
Your Energy Bills Are Higher Than Average
Take a good look at your utility bills from the last couple of months. Are they a lot higher than they were this same time last year? Sure, gas prices and electricity prices can rise on occasion, but if your energy bills are dramatically higher than they used to be, it’s a sign that something in your home is working inefficiently, and it could very well be a furnace to blame.
After all, your HVAC systems account for half of all your home’s energy use, so when something is amiss with your furnace, or your air conditioner, this is where it’s going to show.