BY CATHY CARTER
There can be times when you are peacefully relaxing at home, and you hear a loud sound that you shouldn’t hear. It may be coming from your furnace that is screaming for a repair. You need to either fix it yourself or call an HVAC technician for more technical issues.
Furnace noises are a clear sign that there is a problem with it, and whether minor or significant, it needs to be addressed immediately. Each issue creates a different type of sound, and it can be a little tricky to figure it out. Here we will go through some familiar furnace sounds and what the related problem could be.
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Blower belt replacement is inevitable no matter which furnace you buy. Technicians generally check these during each annual tune-up. It would help if you remembered never to try to fix the blower belt yourself. You can fix the fan belt, but that’s where you stop if you don’t have the required expertise.
These sounds are apparent the second you turn on your furnace. These are indicative of issues with the blower motor. Your furnace’s blower motor is responsible for warming your home, so you want to ensure you take good care of it. If the blower motor is not maintained, then it might lead to your blower fan seizing up.
Blower motors require constant lubrication, and this kind of lubrication is not general in application. It requires a special kind of lubricant that requires a technician but can also be done by yourself if you have the necessary knowledge. To lubricate the motor, you will have to remove it from the process, so if you’re unsure, go with the experts.
Clanks and Scrapes
If you hear a noise sounding like metal scraping against metal, then your blower wheel is in trouble. This tends to happen if the blower fan loosens and starts crashing into the blower house casing. If you hear this sound, you should turn off the furnace without any delay. This kind of sound needs to be addressed immediately.
This is not a problem you can fix yourself, so you will need a qualified HVAC technician to check it out. You might have minor damage to the blower wheel. In the worst-case, your blower fan might be broken and need to be replaced entirely.
Bangs and Booms
If you’re lucky, then this sound might indicate a small problem. As the temperature changes in the furnace, the metal ducts tend to contract and expand. It does not indicate any furnace damage and tends to go away fairly quickly. Duct sealing and air filter replacement can take care of this issue.
If you’re unlucky, then you might have a furnace whose burners are very dirty. This is a serious problem as unclean burners tend to cause a delay in the ignition. It, in turn, causes the gas to build up and potentially explode. Most annual tune-ups include a burner clean-up, but if you haven’t had one in a while, it’s best to call the experts.
One of the most common reasons for your furnace making a rattling sound is simply because of some loose screws or panels. It can be solved at home with a screwdriver, but there are some precautions you must take. You must ensure that your furnace is turned off when you try these repairs, and you should ensure you properly secure the access panel once you are done.
If you can’t find any loose panels or screws, that is your indication that something is seriously wrong with your furnace. When the heat exchanger is faulty, these sounds are familiar. Your heat exchanger might be leaking or may be cracked. It tends to happen if your furnace has been subject to neglect as dirty filters and blowers can cause the heat exchanger to crack. Consult a technician immediately as you and your family may be in danger of carbon monoxide poisoning.
There are many other noises your furnace can make apart from these, such as humming or squeaking that could be caused by many problems. It is recommended to refer to a qualified HVAC technician when you’re unsure about such furnace issues.
(Disclaimer: The article is sponsored, and hence promotes some commercial links.)