Common Furnace Problems in Older Homes & How to Address Them

March 3, 2024


Ever wondered why your old home feels especially chilly during the winter? Aged homes, with their character and charm, often come with unique challenges, especially when it comes to heating systems.

From the mysterious clanks in the night to uneven heating, navigating the quirks of an aging furnace can feel like solving a puzzle. But don't despair!

Unraveling these common furnace problems can save you from potential hassles and keep your home cozy all winter long. Ready to dive in? Let's get started!

Pilot Light Issues

One of the most common furnace issues in older homes is a malfunctioning pilot light. A pilot light that won't stay lit can be caused by a variety of reasons such as:

  • a dirty or corroded thermocouple
  • gas supply issues
  • drafty conditions

To troubleshoot this issue, first check to see if there's any buildup around the pilot light or thermocouple. If there is, gently clean it and try relighting the pilot light.

If that doesn't work, inspect your gas supply if it is uninterrupted and if there are any drafts in the area. Sometimes simply adjusting a draft diverter or closing a nearby window can do the trick.

If none of these solutions work, you may need a furnace repair or consider replacing them with a newer, more efficient model.

Lack of Furnace Maintenance

Over time, dust and debris can build up inside your furnace, causing it to work harder than it should. This can lead to decreased efficiency and potential breakdowns.

To prevent this, make sure to schedule regular maintenance checks for your furnace. These checks should include HVAC upgrades such as:

  • replacing air filters
  • cleaning and lubricating fan motors
  • checking for gas leaks

Winter is the perfect time to schedule an inspection, as your heater will be working harder during this season.

Thermostat Malfunctions

A thermostat malfunction can cause the furnace to turn off and on at inappropriate times, leading to uneven heating throughout your home. If you notice any issues with it, try replacing the batteries or cleaning the contact points.

If that doesn't work, consider upgrading to a programmable thermostat which can help regulate temperature more efficiently. Moreover, you can set it to lower the temperature when you're away from home and save on energy costs.

Mechanical Wear and Tear

As with any appliance, older heaters are prone to mechanical wear and tear. This can lead to small issues like loose belts or motor bearings, which can cause loud noises and decrease efficiency.

So if you hear strange noises coming from your furnace, it's best to call a professional for repairs. Ignoring these issues can lead to bigger home heating problems down the road.

However, if your furnace is more than 15 years old and has recurring issues, it might be time to consider replacing it with a newer model. This will not only save you money on repairs but also decrease your energy bills in the long run.

Preventing the Most Common Furnace Problems

We've walked through the chilly corridors of furnace problems together, shining a light on those sneaky problems that love to keep us in the cold. Remember, staying toasty this winter doesn't have to feel like a quest in a frosty wonderland.

Not feeling up to the task or think it's time for an upgrade? Reach out to your local heating experts today!

Did you find this article helpful? Check out the rest of our blog now!


Oscar Corino

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