It can be supremely frustrating to turn on your heating system during a cold day only to find that it’s not working properly for whatever reason. After the standard amount of cursing and fuming, you may be tempted to pick up the phone and call for repairs right away. That’s not a bad idea, of course. Most heating problems require professional repairs in order to be resolved. However, before you call for heating repairs, it’s a good idea to check on a few things first. You might be able to resolve the problem on your own, or at least identify what exactly is wrong with the heater.
Yes, we know it seems like a painfully obvious thing to say “check the thermostat” if your heater isn’t working. Still, a surprising amount of heating issues turn out to be due to a thermostat setting error. Perhaps someone else in the house changed the settings and didn’t tell you, as can often happen. Or maybe the thermostat is just out of batteries. Regardless, make sure that you check the thermostat and confirm that everything is working properly before you assume the problem is located elsewhere in the system.
The Air Filter
If you are using a centralized forced air heater, you almost certainly have an air filter in the system that should be checked before you call for repairs. Air filters can become clogged if they aren’t changed often enough, which will block most of the air in the ducts from flowing into the heating system. If your heater isn’t blowing enough warm air, it might be because the air filter is clogged.
The Pilot Light
If your heater runs on gas and uses a standing pilot light, you should check it to make sure that it’s still burning before you call for repairs. If the pilot light is out, the system won’t be able to start the burner assembly to begin producing heat. If relighting the pilot light fixes the problem, great! If the pilot light won’t relight, or refuses to stay lit for long after being relit, then you may have a different problem that needs to be dealt with.
The Circuit Breaker
Sometimes, the heater isn’t working simply because the circuit it was on overloaded. Check the circuit breaker to make sure nothing is tripped. If you need to reset one or more circuits, do so and see if that fixes the issue. If everything appears to be fine with the breaker and your heater still isn’t working, then the issue is likely located elsewhere.
If none of the above items is the source of the problem, you will likely need to call a professional to examine the system for you. But at least you made sure it wasn’t something simple to fix.
Comfy Heating & Air Conditioning Inc. provides comprehensive heating repair services in Oakland, CA. If you need help with your home heating system, contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our expert HVAC technicians.