No heater in the world is going to make your home feel warm within mere seconds, or even minutes. Especially if you’ve allowed your home to get cold as an icebox! It will take even more time to heat up, in that case.
But we’re not saying we don’t believe you when you say you don’t feel the heat. If you feel air that is distinctly not warm coming out of your air vents–or can’t feel any air at all–it could be a sign that you need repairs. A furnace that isn’t blowing hot air could be suffering from one of these issues:
Pilot Light or Igniter is Out
Modern furnaces use electric igniters instead of pilot lights. Even so, you might still have a model with a pilot light, and it might have gone out.
- First, simply try relighting the pilot light. This might be the end of your problems!
- If the pilot light refuses to relight, then it could be too dirty. If you haven’t had maintenance in a while, this could be a likely culprit.
- If the pilot light doesn’t stay lit, then you could have a problem with the thermocouple. At that point, we advise leaving the furnace off and calling for heating services in Riverside, CA.
If you have a newer model with an electric ignition, there are some things you can check:
- It might simply need replacing. Unfortunately, electronic ignitions sometimes need replacing even long before the furnace, itself, needs replacement.
- The limiting switch could be triggering too early. The limiting switch turns on when the furnace is getting too hot, and something could be triggering it to activate.
- Hot surface igniters can sometimes burn out if hit by a power surge.
Regardless of the cause, electronic ignition issues need a professional’s help. We don’t advise trying to fix electrical problems in any of your HVAC systems without the help of a pro.
The Furnace is Overheating
Is the furnace blowing hot air, then cold air, and then stopping completely? This pattern indicates that your furnace might be overheating. As mentioned above, this is a situation where the limiting switch would come into play.
Some possible reasons for that include:
- A Clogged Air Filter: If the air filter is too dirty, it will restrict airflow and trap enough heat to trigger the limiting switch. If you can’t remember the last time you had your air filter changed, there’s a strong possibility that this is the problem.
- A Broken Blower: After your furnace creates warm air, a fan, called the blower, blows it through your ducts and into your home. An obstructed or burnt out blower motor could be the reason for your overheating problems.
Ducts can sometimes become obstructed if duct insulation has become loose. In some rare cases, there might even be the corpse of a pest causing the obstruction! These can block airflow enough to cause overheating.
The opposite could also be true. Your ducts might have a leak, instead. This would cause hot air to leak, thus reducing the airflow.
In either case, ducts can’t be easily inspected and will require the help of a professional.