Troubleshooting an Old Furnace: When to Call In the Professionals

What’s that smell? It’s nasty, unpleasant, and coming from your furnace. Your old furnace needs troubleshooting.

It’s not always as easy as smelling something to figure out you are having furnace problems. Luckily, this guide covers common problems you might experience, how to deal with them, and when to call the professionals.

Keep reading to learn more.

Overheating Furnace

The overheating of an old furnace is often caused by a clogged or dirty filter. Dust can restrict airflow and cause your furnace to work harder and longer to meet your home’s heating needs.

If replacing your dirty air filter doesn’t solve the issue, it’s time to call the professionals. You might have a component that needs repairing.

Malfunctioning Thermostat

Another good place to start if you are experiencing furnace issues is the thermostat. People assume their furnace is defective without checking the thermostat first.

Confirm that it is set to heat and turn the fan on auto. Check if the thermostat is set to a high enough temperature to allow the furnace to release heat.

If you haven’t checked the batteries in a while, switch them out for new ones. You can also replace your thermostat completely with a smart thermostat that makes tracking home temperature easier.

This is typically the first line of defense when you deal with furnace problems. Before calling the pros, check out other likely causes of furnace issues.

Ductwork Damage

The heated air that your furnace produces is transported through ductwork in your home. If you have any damage within the ducts, the air coming out won’t be warm.

Your furnace will fail to provide the desired home temperature if you have small openings like cracks or leaks that pick up cold air. Heavy duct damage results in complete loss of heated air.

If you suspect that something is wrong with your ductwork, a qualified technician can mend the damaged areas.

Odd Smells and Sounds

Knowing when to call the professionals is easier when you can smell or hear your furnace. Your unit can make some noise at times, but an unfamiliar noise is a cause for concern.

It’s also important to call a professional if you smell gas. This is a sign of a gas leak that is often accompanied by weird sounds. You should leave the area immediately and call the pros for help.

Annual Maintenance

It’s important to call the professionals for annual preventative maintenance to avoid excessive HVAC repair costs. This is true for every type of furnace but is especially necessary if you have an old furnace.

Technicians can inspect your furnace and catch problems before they develop into something more serious. This can help you avoid any issues you might have to troubleshoot on your own.

How to Troubleshoot an Old Furnace

An old furnace requires extra care if you expect it to continue working. At a certain age, it is likely to experience some or all of the issues outlined in this guide.

However, you can attempt to troubleshoot them on your own. If you can’t fix the problem yourself, call the professionals.

To minimize the risk of an issue occurring, keep up with annual preventative maintenance. For more home improvement tips, check out the other posts on our blog.