What Are Those Odd Sounds Coming from My Gas Furnace?

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If you have owned your gas furnace for a while, you probably know the contented hum it makes when it is operating the way it should be. But sometimes your heating equipment will make an unexpected squeak, rattle or click, and it could mean you’re in need of a professional heating repair.

Here are three common issues that could lead to your furnace make strange noises this heating season:

  • Excessive dust and debris – Dust is the natural enemy of your furnace – it can damage moving parts while making your equipment noisier overall. A dirty gas burner, for example, will make a low rumbling noise, while dusty, under-lubricated ball bearings will create a high-pitched squeal. The culprit in many cases of excess dust is a clogged furnace air filter – try replacing it and see if the noises go away. If not, contact us for heating service.
  • A failing motor – An overworked or improperly maintained furnace motor can be prone to burnout; be on the lookout (or listen-out?) for a humming or whirring noise, which may indicate a motor that is on the brink of failing. If you hear this type of sound, contact us for service ASAP if you want to avoid a no heat emergency.
  • A delayed ignition – A loud banging sound coming from your furnace can mean a delayed ignition – a problem that should be checked out by a professional as soon as possible. This small explosion is the result of gas building up in your furnace chamber due to the burner not lighting properly, similar to what you may have experienced with a gas grill. A delayed ignition can be caused by:
    • A high air-to-gas ratio making it difficult to light
    • Not enough gas (probably due to low gas pressure)
    • A clogged or worn down burner

    Whatever the cause, a delayed ignition is a problem for a heating system pro.

The bottom line: If it sounds weird, get it checked out

Furnaces are complicated machines, and tampering with them without proper training can be dangerous: a significant electric shock or exposure to a potentially dangerous build-up of carbon monoxide in your Connecticut home are just two potential consequences of improper maintenance.

When it comes to repairing a furnace, DON’T do-it-yourself – contact the pros at Hocon Gas for expert heating system repair and maintenance service.

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