Help! My Furnace Keeps Turning Off! What Do I Do? 

Have you noticed the furnace in your Portsmouth, VA, home shuts off almost immediately after turning on? This makes your home’s temperature inconsistent and often leaves you in the cold. You may begin to wonder what will happen if the furnace doesn’t come back on at all.

When a furnace turns off and on quickly and frequently, it’s known as short-cycling. This is a significant problem for any homeowner. Not only is it annoying, but it can also increase your energy bills because of the inefficient heating pattern.  

What factors cause a furnace to continually shut off? When is it time to call for a furnace repair? Here are a few common causes for a short-cycling furnace.  

You Have a Dirty or Clogged Air Filter 

Changing a dirty or clogged air filter is the most straightforward furnace repair. An old, clogged air filter prevents air from being adequately filtered and obstructs airflow to the heat exchanger. This component can overheat due to a lack of airflow, triggering a safety mechanism that shuts down the furnace. 

Usually, this is a positive because it protects your furnace. But when in the middle of Portsmouth, VA, winter, it’s not what you want.  

Luckily, a clogged filter has a solution that takes only a few steps. Many homeowners choose to replace the air filter independently, but if you’re uncomfortable or not sure how to do it, call a local furnace technician to help you with the process. 

You Have a Problematic Thermostat 

Once you’ve checked (and changed) the air filter, if your furnace continues to shut off, the next step is to check the thermostat. It could be malfunctioning and require the attention of a local furnace technician. 

First, you should check that the thermostat is in the on position and set to heat. Ensure the temperature is programmed to the correct setting. Someone else may be setting your thermostat to a lower temperature, making it seem like the furnace is not working correctly. 

Once the settings are correct, you’ll want someone to help you with the next step. You’ll need to determine whether the thermostat is communicating with the furnace. While you work the thermostat, ask your partner to listen near the source of heat. 

As you adjust the temperature from higher to lower, you should hear a sound. A noise indicates the thermostat is working, and your problem is likely with the furnace. If you hear no sound, you’ll need a local furnace technician to assess your thermostat and make a diagnosis. 

One final thing to consider is your thermostat placement. When it is directly in the sunlight or another heat source, it may register a warmer temperature, causing your furnace to shut off too soon.

Your Flame Sensor Is Dirty 

Sometimes a furnace shuts off because of a dirty flame sensor. Under normal circumstances, the flame sensor detects the presence of a flame and turns off the gas valve when there isn’t one. This safety measure keeps your home from filling up with toxic gas fumes, which has hazardous consequences. 

Typically, the flame sensor works as it’s supposed to, keeping you safe and comfortable at the same time. But if it is corroded or covered with soot, it no longer senses a flame, even if the furnace is on. The gas valve shuts off, stops producing heat, and cycles the furnace off.  

If you suspect this is the cause of your furnace problems, contact a professional for help. This type of repair should be handled by a local furnace technician. 

Your Furnace Is Too Big for Your Home 

A crucial step to purchasing a furnace is choosing the correct size for your home. Otherwise, you’ll face undesirable problems. For example, a too-large furnace will heat your home too quickly. The furnace has done its job, and the thermostat shuts off. 

Without heat consistently moving through your home, the temperature will quickly drop again. Then the process will repeat itself, over and over again. The only way to repair this issue is to replace the current furnace with a properly sized furnace. 

Discuss your options with a professional from Energy Pro Heating & Cooling for advice on which size and model will best suit your home. 

The Heating and Cooling Experts You Can Trust for Furnace Repair

When your furnace isn’t working, you’ll want to call a local furnace technician you can trust. Energy Pro Heating & Cooling has a reliable team ready to help you with any furnace repair you need to keep your heat on. Call us today to schedule an appointment in Portsmouth, VA, or the surrounding areas.  

March 2nd, 2022 | Heating and Cooling