Timberline Blog

A How-to Guide on Fixing Common Heating System Problems

November 30, 2016 by Timberline

Why is My Heater Not Working?

What do you do when your home heating system is not working? Do you call your HVAC company, or search for solutions online? Do you have a guide or checklist to help you figure out the problem and fix it on your own?

This how-to guide on fixing common heater problems can help you save time and money by walking you through finding issues you may be able to fix yourself. For anything else, call your HVAC professional.

Heater not working

What Can Go Wrong With Your Furnace

Homeowners can easily fix some furnace problems, while a professional should explore other problems. Your heating system is complex, and issues can range from something as simple as a dead battery in your wall thermostat to issues that are much more complicated and require specialized equipment to detect.

The good news is that common heater problems often have simple solutions. While it’s important to know when to call in a professional to work on your heating system, many furnace issues can be easy to fix yourself.

An Easy Guide for Common Heater Problems That You Can Fix:

1. Check the thermostats: are they on?
Make sure the displays are working. If the displays are off or blank on your wall-mounted thermostats, it could indicate that you may need to replace the batteries inside the thermostat.

2. Check for power: check the breaker, switch, indicator light, and fuse
If your power is out, it can affect your heating system. You may need to flip you breaker switch on, or check any easily accessible fuses. If you cycle the breaker, you may reset alarms, which will make it more difficult to diagnose further issues.

3. Check for gas: is the electricity or gas out?
Check other appliances that use electricity or gas to see if they operate correctly. If other appliances aren’t working, contact your gas or electricity service provider to let them know.

4. Check the air filter: it could be full
If your air filter is clogged, it could be preventing warm air from flowing into your ducts and circulating through your home. Professionals recommend replacing your 1” thick poly or pleated home air filter every 4-6 weeks for optimal system performance. If you have larger capacity filters, follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.

5. Check the pilot light: is it out?
If your furnace has a pilot light, check to see if it’s lit or off. If it is off, check your heating system’s instruction manual for specific directions on lighting your pilot light. If you light the pilot and it goes out again, you will need to seek a professional to diagnose further.

Heater Maintenance Over the Winter

The best way to deal with common furnace problems is to prevent them. Scheduling regular maintenance of your system can help you identify issues early, saving you money in the long run, and keeping you from waiting until the heat goes out to find out that there’s a problem. Don’t get left out in the cold! Contact us for more information on scheduling heater maintenance service or repairs.

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