Furnace Repair Checklist
1. Look at the Thermostat
First, make certain that your thermostat is signaling your heat to ignite.
- Replace the batteries if the screen is not displaying anything. If the digital monitor is jumbled, the thermostat may need to be swapped out.
- Ensure the control is switched to “heat” rather than “off” or “cool.”
- Ensure the program is set to the appropriate day and time and is set to “run.” If you’re having a hard time turning off the schedule, regulate the temperature by using the up/down arrows and pressing the “hold” button. This will cause the furnace to ignite if thermostat is causing trouble.
- Turn the temperature setting to 5 degrees above what the room temperature currently is.
If your heater hasn’t kicked on within a couple minutes, make certain that it has power by changing the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t begin to run, your heater could be without power.
If you use a smart thermostat—such as one designed by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting will depend on your model. Take a look at the manufacturer’s website for help. If you still can’t get your Wi-Fi thermostat to work, contact us at 608-291-3606 for heating and cooling service.
2. Inspect Breakers and Switches
Next, confirm your breaker and furnace switch are on.
- Look for your main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, keep an eye out for a metallic metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
- Ensure your hands and feet aren’t moist before using the panel or breakers.
- Look for the breaker marked “furnace” or “heat,” and ensure it’s turned “on.” If you discover a tripped breaker, it will be in the middle or “off” position.
- Moving one hand, steadily flip the breaker to the “on” position. If the breaker trips right away and pops back to “off,” don't try to reset it and get in touch with a professional from Lanz Furnace and Fireplace at 608-291-3606 immediately.
It doesn’t matter how old your furnace is or what brand it is, it has no less than one standard wall switch situated on or by it.
- Make certain the lever is facing up in the “on” spot. If it was turned off, expect your furnace to take up to five minutes to turn on. (If you don’t know where to locate your furnace, take a look at your basement, garage or utility closet. It can also be in a crawl space or attic.)
3. Put in a New Air Filter
When we consider heating breakdowns, a dirty, clogged air filter is frequently the top offender.
If your filter is too dusty:
- Your heater won’t be able to stay on, or it could overheat from restricted airflow.
- Your gas bills could increase because your heating system is running more than it should.
- Your heater might stop working sooner than it should because a filthy filter triggers it to work overtime.
- Your furnace might be cut off from power if an overly filthy filter causes the breaker to trip.
Based on what model of heater you use, your air filter is located within the blower compartment of your heating system, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.
To put in a new filter:
- Switch off your heating system.
- Take out the filter and angle it toward the light. If you can’t notice light through it, replace it.
- Install the new filter with the arrow pointing toward the heating system to prevent damage.
Flat filters should be replaced monthly, while pleated filters should last about three months. If you have children or pets, you may have to put in a new filter sooner.
To make the procedure smoother down the road, write with a permanent marker on your heater outside or ductwork to show the airflow direction and filter size.
4. Look at the Condensate Pan
Otherwise known as drain pans, condensate pans hold water your heater pulls from the air.
If moisture is dripping from your heater or its pan has too much water in it, try these steps.
- If your pan has a drain (look for a PVC pipe), make sure that it isn’t clogged. If it requires draining, get a special pan-cleaning tablet you can buy at home improvement or hardware stores.
- If your pan uses a pump, check the float switch. If the button can’t be moved from the “up” position with liquid in the pan, reach us at 608-291-3606, because you will likely need a new pump.
5. Check for Heating Error Codes
If faults continue, take a look inside your heater’s plastic window to confirm the blower motor’s status. Dependent on the model, the light may also be attached on the outside of your furnace.
If you notice anything other than a steady, colored light or twinkling green light, call us at 608-291-3606 for HVAC service. Your furnace may be emitting an error code that needs specialized service.
6. Clean the Flame Sensor
If your heating system makes an effort to operate but shuts off without distributing warm air, a dirty flame sensor could be responsible. When this takes place, your furnace will make an attempt to start three times before a safety feature powers it down for approximately an hour.
If you feel confident with opening up your heater, gently scrubbing your flame sensor is a task you can do on your own. Or, one of our heating service experts can do it for you.
If you want to clean the sensor on your own, you should have:
- A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
- Piece of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
- A dry, clean paper towel
- Turn off the heater’s power with its wall switch or breaker. If your gas valve isn’t electric, you have to shut off the gas along with it.
- Lift off the furnace’s front panel and trace the wire to the flame sensor.
- Unscrew the rod and use your sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth to gently clean the metal rod.
- Clear the rod with a paper towel.
- Put the sensor back in.
- Put the furnace doors back on.
- Switch the furnace’s power back on. It might run through a series of checks before continuing usual running. If your heater doesn’t turn on, the sensor might need to be replaced or something else might be creating an issue. If this takes place, get in touch with us at 608-291-3606 for heating and cooling repair support.
7. Light the Pilot Light
If you own an outdated heater, the pilot light could be out. To relight it, look for the directions on a sheet on your heating system, or try these guidelines.
- Look for the lever beneath your heating system labeled “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
- Turn the switch to the “off” position.
- Take a break for at least five minutes to limit the possibility for creating a fire.
- Move the knob to “pilot.”
- Push the “reset” lever as you move the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
- Depress the “reset” switch once the pilot light is ignited.
If you have gone through the instructions twice and the pilot light still won’t light or remain burning, call us at 608-291-3606 for furnace service.
Check Your Gas Source
Try using a second gas appliance. If it doesn’t function, your natural gas delivery could be switched off, or you could be out of propane.