Furnace Repair Checklist
1. Inspect the Thermostat
To begin, make sure your thermostat is signaling your heat to start.
- Change the batteries if the screen is blank. If the digital screen is jumbled, the thermostat may need to be changed.
- Ensure the button is set to “heat” instead of “off” or “cool.”
- Make certain the program is displaying the right day and time and is set to “run.” If you’re having trouble overriding the program, set the temperature by utilizing the up/down arrows and pressing the “hold” button. This will cause the furnace to turn on if thermostat is causing an issue.
- Turn the temperature setting to 5 degrees hotter than the temperature of the room.
If your furnace hasn’t started within a few minutes, make certain that it has power by moving the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t begin to run, your heating system could be without power.
If you use a smart thermostat—like one manufactured by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting is very model-specific. Take a look at the manufacturer’s website for assistance. If you’re still unable to get your Wi-Fi thermostat to operate, reach us at 785-269-0465 for heating and cooling service.
2. Inspect Breakers and Switches
Next, verify your breaker and furnace switch are on.
- Find your main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, search for a gray metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
- Make sure your hands and feet are dry before opening the panel or breakers.
- Locate the breaker labeled “furnace” or “heat,” and ensure it’s turned “on.” If the breaker has tripped, it will be in the middle or “off” position.
- With one hand, firmly switch the breaker to the “on” position. If the breaker immediately trips and pops back to “off,” don't try to reset it and contact a team member from Scott Temperature at 785-269-0465 quickly.
No matter your furnace’s age or brand, it has at minimum one regular wall switch located on or close to it.
- Make sure the lever is facing up in the “on” placement. If it was turned off, expect your furnace to take up to five minutes to start. (If you’re unsure where your furnace is located, 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 think about heating breakdowns, a dirty, full air filter is frequently the top culprit.
If your filter is too grungy:
- Your heating system won’t stay on, or it could overheat from limited airflow.
- Your heating costs could increase because your heater is running too often.
- Your heat might stop working sooner than it should because a filthy filter triggers it to work harder.
- Your heating may be cut off from power if an excessively dirty filter results in a tripped breaker.
While it depends on what make of heating system you own, your air filter is located within the blower compartment of your heating system, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.
To swap out your filter:
- Switch off your heating system.
- Pull out the filter and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, use a new one.
- Insert the new filter with the arrow motioning toward the heating system to avoid damage.
Flat filters should be replaced once a month, while pleated filters should last about three months. If you have children or pets, you might have to put in a new filter more often.
To make the process easier down the line, write with a permanent writing tool on your furnace housing or ductwork to list the airflow direction and filter size.
4. Look at the Condensate Pan
Commonly known as drain pans, condensate pans hold water your heater pulls from the air.
If liquid is dripping out of your heater or its pan has standing water in it, use these guidelines.
- If your pan includes a drain (look for a PVC pipe), make sure that it isn’t clogged. If it requires draining, drop in a special pan-cleaning tablet you can get at home improvement or hardware retailers.
- If your pan uses a pump, inspect the float switch. If the button is jammed “up” with water in the pan, contact us at 785-269-0465, because you will possibly have to install a new pump.
5. Look for Heater Error Codes
If faults persist, peek inside your heater’s plastic window to confirm the blower motor’s status. Dependent on the type, the light might also be fixed on the surface of your furnace.
If you note anything except an uninterrupted, colored light or flickering green light, contact us at 785-269-0465 for HVAC service. Your furnace may be communicating an error code that is calling for specialized service.
6. Clean the Flame Sensor
If your heater makes an effort to run but shuts off without distributing warm air, a dirty flame sensor might be at fault. When this occurs, your furnace will attempt to ignite three times before a safety device powers it down for approximately an hour.
If you feel okay with opening up your heating system, cleaning your flame sensor is a job you have the ability to do personally. Or, one of our heating service experts has the ability to complete it for you.
If you are confident cleaning the sensor yourself, you should have:
- A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
- Section of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
- A fresh paper towel
- Shut off the heating system’s power with its wall switch or breaker. If your gas valve isn’t electric, you must shut off the gas along with it.
- Take off the heater’s front panel and trace the wire to the flame sensor.
- Take off 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.
- Secure the furnace doors.
- Switch the furnace’s power back on. It may run through a sequence of inspections before proceeding with regular operation. If your heater doesn’t ignite, the sensor may need to be replaced or something else might be wrong. If this happens, contact us at 785-269-0465 for heating and cooling repair support.
7. Reignite the Pilot Light
If you own an aging heating system, the pilot light could be extinguished. To reignite it, find the directions on a sheet on your heating system, or try these recommendations.
- Look for the toggle beneath your heater marked “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
- Turn the switch to the “off” position.
- Wait at least five minutes to limit the possibility for sparking a fire.
- Push the knob to “pilot.”
- Press the “reset” lever as you push the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
- Release the “reset” lever once the pilot light is burning.
If you have tried the list twice and the pilot light still won’t light or keep burning, contact us at 785-269-0465 for furnace service.
Inspect Your Gas Source
Try using another gas appliance. If it doesn’t function, your natural gas service might be turned off, or you might have run out of propane.