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During the winter months, your furnace is your best friend. There is nothing quite like coming out of the cold into a nicely warmed home. This winter most people are spending more time in their home than ever, which makes a properly functioning furnace even more important. If you have your HVAC system serviced annually by a furnace repair company in Chattanooga, TN then you are already on your way to ensuring your furnace keeps functioning properly. However, even with proper servicing things can go wrong from time to time.
Do you know how to recognize when something is wrong with your furnace? Knowing when to seek out furnace repair is the first step in keeping your HVAC system working properly. Most furnaces do not just break down on homeowners. They usually give off subtle signs that something is wrong and needs to be repaired. It is up to you as a homeowner to identify the signals and then call to schedule a repair in Chattanooga, TN.
Like most things, prompt action is usually the key to keeping costs down and your HVAC system healthy. The longer you wait to address an issue the better the chance that more damage is going to occur. For example, if you hear a noise that indicates there is a loose piece, but ignore it, that loose piece can become completely dislodged forcing another component to work harder in turn wearing it out. Now you have a domino effect on your hands that will only continue to get worse until you have someone into your home for furnace repair.
With this in mind, it is helpful to know what the major signs of furnace repair are so that you can be on the lookout during the rest of the winter. The following are the most common signs that it is time for a repair but keep in mind that other problems can occur so if you have any reason to think that something is wrong with your HVAC system is best to consult with an expert about furnace repair in Chattanooga, TN.
Odd Smells Coming from Your Furnace
Most people are familiar with the odd smell that comes out of their furnace the first time they fire it up. In fact, due to this, some people like to fire up the furnace before it gets too cold so they can air out the house with the windows open. Usually, after the unit runs for a few hours the smell dissipates and all you smell are the normal odors of your home.
However, if you randomly notice this fuel smell in the middle of the year while the unit is running you may want to call a furnace repair company and have someone check it out. The smell should not come back and can be an indication of a minor or major issue in your unit. On the other hand, if you fire up your furnace for the first time and notice by the end of the day that the smell is still pretty strong you may want to turn it off until someone from a Chattanooga, TN company can come out to your home to investigate the problem a bit more thoroughly.
There is a wide range of issues that may be responsible for odd odors or fuel like odors which can include everything from a dead rodent in the ductwork to excessive dust inside of the HVAC system to an actual gas leak. As you can see, some of these are more serious than others so it is important to have a certified technician from a repair company take a good look.
Pilot Light Is Discolored
Most people don’t look at their HVAC system much because it is either tucked away in a utility closet or hidden away in the basement. Still, make it a point to take a peek at your pilot light every time you happen to be down in the basement or doing a load of laundry. Your pilot light should be blue. If you notice that it is any other color you need to call for furnace repair because it can pose a real safety issue in the future.
If the pilot is a different color, this signals that there is a ventilation issue within your system and the carbon monoxide is not properly dissipating. Every HVAC system will give off a minuscule amount of carbon dioxide, but when it is working correctly the gas is vented back outside of your home. An off-color flame could indicate that this is not properly happening. Yellow, in particular, is a very concerning color and demands a prompt call for furnace repair.
In some situations, it may be best to shut down your entire furnace until your furnace repair agent can get out to your home to take a look. Carbon monoxide is odorless and can cause a lot of health problems if regularly breathed in trace amounts. If larger amounts are drifting in the air it can be extremely deadly. This is also a good reminder that every home should have a carbon monoxide detector on every floor of the home to help ensure you stay safe.
The Unit Won’t Start-Up
Every HVAC system is great when you first buy it, but like most things, as they age they can get a little cranky. As your system ages, it becomes a smart idea to fire it up before the real Chattanooga, TN winter sets in so you have time to seek out furnace repair before it gets into freezing temperatures. An older furnace may require you to start it multiple times before it kicks in or may cut out during the day. Some homeowners have to restart their unit several times throughout the day.
This is a clear indication that something is wrong with the HVAC system and you need to call someone for furnace repair. A lot of times these types of problems are caused by a damaged thermostat or wiring that is loose or disconnected. You don’t want to cause an electrical short, so it is best to have a professional check out both. Replacing or reconnecting an electrical wire can solve the problem and remove the hassle of restarting the furnace from your life.
Your Home Is Not Warm
While it should go without saying that a cold home should indicate its time for furnace repair, some people attempt to struggle through making do. However, if your furnace is running and the thermostat is set at a reasonable temperature you should not have to walk around your home dressed like an Eskimo. Keep in mind that if your system is not producing enough heat it is probably going to keep cycling to attempt to reach a goal it can’t. This will result in high energy bills and no comfort for you.
You don’t want to keep paying high heat bills for the heat that you are not actually receiving. If your furnace is not keeping your home evenly heated then it is time to schedule repairs with a furnace repair technician. There are usually a handful of reasons behind why a furnace is failing to heat your home. It is possible that the ductwork is leaking and allowing the warm air to escape before it gets to your heating vents or it is possible that the thermostat is not properly hooked up to the furnace. Issues with the thermostat wiring can also cause problems as can a broken component within the furnace. A professional should be able to isolate the problem and restore your furnace to its full glory so that you can once again feel comfortable at home.
Your Furnace Is Turning Into a One-Man-Band
All furnaces make a small degree of noise when they start up and when they are running during a cycle. However, you should know the normal sounds of your furnace. If you hear any signs that are abnormal for your system then you should call for furnace repair. Sudden loud or persistent noises are usually a sign that something is seriously wrong with your unit and should not be ignored.
If you can, try to record the sounds on your phone so that the technician can hear exactly what you do. This will give them a great starting direction and help them correctly diagnose the problem while they are out. The type of sound that a furnace is making can tell a great deal about what is wrong. For instance, whistling and squealing usually indicate that there is an issue with the fan or a belt that is wearing down whereas a groaning or banging noise can indicate that something is broken or loose inside the furnace. If you start hearing a large banging noise, turn off your furnace and immediately call for furnace repair. This usually signals a large problem and if you leave the system on there is a good chance it will become severely damaged, possibly beyond repair.
The Air Quality In Your Home Is Poor
During the winter months, the only air that is moving in your house will likely be from the furnace. Most people shut down their Chattanooga, TN windows and close up their homes pretty tightly to seal air in. The downside is that this can reduce the air quality in your house. However, if your furnace is working correctly the filter should help clean out some of the dirt that is in your air.
This is not possible however if your HVAC system is not properly maintained. A system with an old filter or one that has not been properly cleaned will send bacteria, dirt, and foreign particles throughout the house within the air that it dispels.
There are usually clear signs that the air in your home is not as clean as it should be. If you notice that you or family members are coughing more, coming down with an increase in colds, or suffering from vague respiratory issues without any explanations then it is possible that you need to hire someone for furnace repair to clean up the air in your home. This is even more possible if you notice that the allergy symptoms only appear when you are in the house and seem to go away when you leave your home.
The issues may be more pronounced if someone in your home has allergies or asthma. In this case, the presence of foreign particles in the home might cause watery eyes, itchiness, and headaches that never seem to go away until you step outside. In some cases just changing the filter may be enough to solve the problem, but in more serious cases you may need to have your HVAC system cleaned to solve the problem.
It may also be useful to talk to your furnace repair technician about whether or not cleaning your ductwork would help with dust. If you have never had your ductwork clean or live in an older home then cleaning out the ducts might be the best way to clean up the air in your home.
These are just a few of the most common reasons that people call for furnace repair in Chattanooga, TN, but there are many more. The bottom line is that if you think something is wrong with your furnace it is always a better idea to call for help versus sitting on the feeling. It is also recommended that you have your HVAC system serviced at least once a year so that it can be clean and proactively inspected so that you catch minor issues before they have time to become major issues. If you need to schedule an appointment, contact Metro Plumbing, Heating, and Air in Chattanooga, TN. We are always happy to help our neighbors with all of their furnace repair needs.