furnace repair

Ronkonkoma is Getting Cold, but My Furnace Wont Turn On

Fixing your furnace might feel like a daunting task when your heat won’t work. But it doesn’t have to be like that.

There are several fast, low-cost fixes you can do on your own to skip a furnace repair call.

If your furnace won’t turn on, won’t stay on or won’t ignite, try the troubleshooting list below before contacting an HVAC professional.

If you find you need help from an expert and live in Ronkonkoma, Cool Power LLC can provide assistance to you. We service most brands of heating systems.

If you’re ready for a new heating system, we also provide furnace replacement in Ronkonkoma.

While you’re chatting with us, think about a routine furnace maintenance plan from Cool Power LLC that may help you avoid repairs in the future. We can tell you how regularly your furnace should be examined by one of our NATE-certified experts.

Follow our easy guide below to start troubleshooting your furnace. Most of these steps don’t require mechanical skills.

Steps for Furnace Troubleshooting

Check the Thermostat

To start, make sure your thermostat is telling your furnace to turn on.

If you have a digital thermostat:

  • Change the batteries if the screen is blank. If the digital screen is jumbled, the thermostat may need to be replaced.
  • Make sure the switch is set to “heat” rather than “off” or “cool.”
  • Ensure the program is showing the appropriate day and time and is set to “run.” If you’re having trouble overriding the program, set the temperature by using the up/down arrows and press the “hold” button. This will cause the furnace to turn on if thermostat programming is causing a problem.
  • Increase the temperature setting to 5 degrees warmer than the room temperature.
Digital Thermostat

If your furnace hasn’t started within several minutes, make sure it has power by toggling the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t run, your furnace might not have power.

If you have a smart thermostat—like one made by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting is very model-specific. Refer to the manufacturer’s website for help. If you still can’t get your Wi-Fi thermostat to work, contact us for assistance.

Lennox Smart Thermostat

Examine Breakers and Switches

Next, you will need to check if your breaker and furnace switch are on.

  • Find your house’s main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, look for a gray metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
  • Make sure your hands and feet are dry before touching the panel or breakers.
  • Locate the breaker labeled “furnace” or “heat,” and make sure it’s switched “on.” If the breaker has tripped, it will be in the middle or “off” position.
  • Using 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 call a professional from Cool Power LLC at 631-246-4029 right away.

Regardless of your furnace’s age or brand, it has at least one standard wall switch located on or close to it.

  • Make sure the switch is flipped up in the “on” position. If it was turned off, expect your furnace to take up to five minutes to turn on. (If you don’t know where to find your furnace, take a look at your basement, garage or utility closet. It could also be in a crawl space or attic.)

Replace Your Furnace’s Air Filter

When it comes to furnace issues, a grungy, clogged air filter is often to blame.

If your filter is too dirty:

  • Your furnace won’t be able to stay on, or it could overheat from reduced airflow.
  • Your energy bills could go up because your furnace is turning on more often.
  • Your furnace could break down too soon because a dirty filter causes it to overwork.
  • Your furnace can be disconnected from power if an excessively dirty filter causes the breaker to trip.

Depending on what make of furnace you have, your air filter can be found inside the blower compartment of your furnace, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.

Replacing a furnace filter

To replace your filter:

  • Turn off your furnace.
  • Take out the filter and hold it up to the light. If you can’t see light through it, replace it.
  • Insert the new filter with the arrow pointing toward the furnace to avoid damage.

Flat filters should be replaced monthly, while pleated filters should last about three months. You can also get a washable filter that will last about 10 years. If you have children or pets, you may have to put in a new filter more frequently.

To make the process easier in the future, use a permanent marker on your furnace housing or ductwork to list the airflow direction and filter size.

Examine the Condensate Pan

Otherwise known as drain pans, condensate pans capture water your furnace draws from the air.

If water is seeping out of your furnace or its pan has standing water in it, follow these steps.

  • If your pan has a drain (look for a PVC pipe), check that it isn’t full. If it needs to be drained, use a special pan-cleaning tablet you can buy at home improvement or hardware stores.
  • If your pan has a pump, check the float switch. If the switch is stuck “up” with water in the pan, contact Cool Power LLC at 631-246-4029, because you will likely need a new pump.

Peek Inside Your Furnace

If malfunctions persist, peek inside your furnace’s plastic window to confirm the status of the blower motor. Depending on the model, the light could also be attached on the outside of your furnace.

If you see anything else besides a steady, colored light or blinking green light, call Cool Power LLC at 631-246-4029. Your furnace may be communicating an error code that requires professional assistance.

Clean the Flame Sensor

If your furnace tries to start but shuts off without putting out heat, a dirty flame sensor could be at fault. When this occurs, your furnace will try to start three times before a safety feature shuts it down for about an hour.

If you feel comfortable with opening up your furnace, cleaning your flame sensor is something you can do by yourself. Or, one of our HVAC experts at Cool Power LLC can do it for you.

If you want to clean the sensor yourself, you’ll need:

  • A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
  • Piece of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
  • A dry, clean paper towel

Next:

  • Disable the furnace’s power by using its wall switch or breaker. If your gas valve is not electric, you will need to shut off the gas as well.
  • Take 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 lightly rub the metal rod.
  • Wipe off the rod with a paper towel.
  • Remount the sensor.
  • Replace the furnace doors.
  • Turn the furnace’s power back on. It could go through a set of checks before continuing regular operation. If your furnace doesn’t ignite, the sensor may need to be replaced or something else may be wrong. If this happens, call Cool Power LLC at 631-246-4029 for assistance.

Relight the Pilot Light

If you have an older furnace, the pilot light could be out. To relight it, find the instructions on a label on your furnace, or follow these steps.

  • Look for the switch on the bottom of your furnace labeled “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
  • Turn the switch to the “off” position.
  • Wait at least five minutes to avoid possibly starting a fire.
  • Turn the knob to “pilot.”
  • Hold down the “reset” button as you bring the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
  • Release the “reset” button once the pilot light is lit.

If you have followed the instructions twice and the pilot light still won’t light or stay lit, call Cool Power LLC at 631-246-4029.

Check Your Fuel Source

Try switching on another gas appliance. If it doesn’t work, your natural gas service could be turned off, or you could be out of propane.

Cool Power LLC Can Help with Furnace Problems

Followed our troubleshooting guide but your furnace still won’t work?

Call us today at 631-246-4029 or use our online scheduler. We’ll come out and diagnose the problem.

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