As a homeowner, your number one priority is to keep your property in working order. One of the most tumultuous challenges for many in this regard is mitigating potential issues with heating systems. With the ability to make a diverse array of noises, it’s important to be able to decipher such sounds and understand what they mean for your home’s health.
Through the following, we’ll review some common noises a heating system might make and what they signify for the condition of your equipment.
If you notice a loud bang from the furnace as it starts up, there may be a problem with ignition. When the thermostat sends a signal to the furnace to start a cycle, the gas valve opens. The pilot light or ignition system should immediately activate the gas. However, when there is an issue with the ignition system, a tiny quantity of gas may accumulate in the combustion chamber. When the key is turned on, there may be enough gas built up in the chamber to produce a loud banging noise. This sound can disperse throughout the home via ducts. In most situations, issues regarding the ignition system of a furnace should be addressed by a professional. The sooner they are dealt with, the better.
Clunking or thudding noises on behalf of a furnace can also be cause for concern in regards to its proper functioning. One of the most common causes for clunking noises from furnaces is an issue with the system’s fan. For instance, if the blower fan becomes misaligned, the blades might strike the walls or other internal components of the furnace. A fan belt that has cracked or split and is striking other materials as it rotates may also be the source of a clanging or thumping noise in a furnace. Regardless of speculative causes, if your furnace makes these sounds at any time, it is best to turn it off and get a professional opinion.
Furnace whistling is caused by something impeding the flow of air. When a furnace whistles, it’s usually because of a blockage in the system, like an air filter that needs to be cleaned or replaced. A blocked return, items in the ductwork, and shut dampers or vents are other potential causes of a whistling sound from your furnace. You may be able to possibly fix the noise yourself by cleaning the filter, ducts and return, and opening up the dampers. In other situations, the whistling sound might be caused by something that a technician must repair or something that can only be remedied by directly replacing the furnace altogether. It’s important to get your specific situation assessed by a professional prior to making any major changes.
The first step in solving a noise issue with your furnace starts with knowing what sounds are normal for it. If the noise is one you haven’t heard before, it’s especially important to hire a trained professional to examine the problem.
The specialist will examine the situation, diagnose the problem, and recommend the best next steps, whether it’s to repair or replace the system.