Why Would My Gas Furnace Stop Working?

Why Would My Gas Furnace Stop Working?

So you’re asking yourself: why would my gas furnace stop working? Customers are often surprised to find out their gas furnace has stopped working because it may be under ten years old. But breakdowns happen, especially if an hvac system has been poorly maintained. If your gas furnace is older, you may want to read: Is My Gas Furnace Heat Exchanger Safe to familiarize yourself with potential furnace safety issues.

How a Gas Furnace Works

Before we dive into some of potential gas furnace issues, let’s review how a gas furnace works. First the burner ignites the natural gas. Then flames in the heat exchanger heat up and push exhaust and fumes out the flue. The incoming air moves across the heat exchanger and picks up the heat. The blower within the furnace forces the heated air out into the ductwork and through the home. As the warm air moves through the home, cold, dense air comes back through the return ducts to repeat the furnace’s process. For a deeper explanation, checkout Upton’s post Introduction: Your Home’s HVAC System 101 to learn more.

In short, air moves through a central heating system and with air comes dirt, dander and debris buildup. Dirty systems breakdown, older systems breakdown. And when they do you’ll likely need to repair or replace depending on your specific circumstances.

Your system may actually still be working, but not as it did in the past. Upton preaches regular maintenance because gas furnace repairs can be expensive. As Benjamin Franklin once wrote: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. That goes for regular oil changes on your car, to regular dental cleanings (ugh), to regular maintenance of your gas furnace. But if you’ve gotten this far, you likely need to repair your gas furnace. Learn more about potential repairs here and our Clearview flat rate pricing system.

Potential Gas Furnace Symptoms

Here is a list of potential symptoms that may show up and possible gas furnace components that need repair:

  • Gas Furnace Just Hums or Clicks
      • Potential blower motor or induction motor has seized up and is no longer functioning.
  • Gas Furnace Keeps Turning Off and On
      • This could possibly be a dirty flame sensor or partially clogged pressure switch. A pressure switch can become clogged with carbon buildup on the pressure switch orifice. To clean, the tube needs to be removed and carbon cleared from the orifice.
  • Gas Furnace Keeps Short Cycling
      • Could be any of the above or a thermostat issue.
  • Gas Furnace Leaking Water
      • This has to be related to a higher efficiency gas furnace to create the water. Possible leak or condensate drain pan is clogged.
  • Gas Furnace Lights Then Goes Out
    • Flame sensor issue.

This of course is only a short list of potential symptoms. If your gas furnace is not working, we have certified technicians who can diagnose and fix your system. Give us a call at 916-461-4961 or fill out a service request form here.


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