Woman Feeling Cold at Home Checking the Thermostat

Watch for These 4 Winter Heating Problems

A good heating system can last for a few decades, and proper maintenance and servicing help get the maximum life out of your system. The cold, snowy Helena, MT weather can put heaters to the test, and the extra work could cause or exacerbate certain issues.

The following heating problems may crop up during winter, but a few simple fixes can help. You can also call an HVAC professional to service your system so that works at peak performance year-round.

1. No Pilot Light

If your heater isn’t producing warm air, check to see if the pilot light stays lit continuously. Drafty conditions in your home’s garage or furnace room can cause the pilot light to go out.

If drafts are not the problem, your unit could have a broken thermocouple, interrupting the pilot light’s gas supply. The pilot light may also be damaged or clogged, requiring servicing to clean it.

2. A Dirty Filter

The cold winter weather doesn’t cause dirty filters, but it does cause your heater to work much harder to pump warm air. A clogged filter that hasn’t been changed for months or years can reduce or completely cut off the air source to the heater’s blower.

Both gas and electric furnaces rely on electricity to power the blower motor. A clogged filter and limited airflow place undue stress on the heater and can cause it to trip the circuit breaker to prevent the blower motor from burning out.

3. Furnace Short Cycling

When you use your furnace during winter weather, it may continuously cycle on and off. The heater might never stay on long enough to heat your home effectively. A faulty thermostat can cause this problem, and you might need to call for heating service. The easiest fix is usually batteries, so check and replace them. If that does not remedy the issue, verify that your thermostat is set to the temperature you want it to target.

If the heater is still cycling on and off, you may have a calibration issue with the thermostat. In this case, you can call an HVAC professional to come out and calibrate your thermostat to keep the heater on until it hits the thermostat setting.

4. Humidity Issues

If your home has a boiler, you won’t experience this problem, but running a furnace during the winter cold can dry out the air in your home. Low humidity can make it harder for the air to stay warm because dry air does not have the capacity to retain heat efficiently. You could wind up running the heater all day long with subpar results.

Fortunately, to resolve this issue, all you need to do is increase the humidity of your home’s air. You can use individual room humidifiers or have a residential humidification system installed.

Service Your HVAC Before Trouble Hits

Furnace problems can become more than an inconvenience when winter temperatures drop. Whether you need an inspection, repairs, or a whole new HVAC system, our licensed, professional HVAC technicians provide prompt, efficient service. We have been servicing customers for over 35 years and guarantee your satisfaction. Call Big Sky Plumbing & Heating and schedule an appointment for your HVAC needs today.