How to Restart Your Furnace and Why it May be Necessary

During the fall and winter months, your furnace is one of the most commonly used and vital appliances in your home. Your family depends on the heater to stay warm and cozy when the temperatures outside begin to drop, and while things may not be brutally cold just yet, the dead of winter will be here before you know it. And when your heating system stops working like it should – you definitely will know about it.

Certain rooms in your home may not feel as warm as they should. Your furnace is making odd and unusual noises. Or your heating system may not even be cycling on at all. All of these issues may cause you to panic, thinking that your only fix to the problem may be to replace your heating system. While that may be what’s required in some situations, many common heating problems can be easily taken care of by a trained professional. Also, it’s important to point out that the average homeowner may be able to take care of the problem on their own before picking up the phone to call for help.

If your heating system isn’t working as expected, the simple solution to the problem may be for you to restart it. Additionally, a restart may be required if you’ve lost power in your home due to a storm or for a disturbance in the lines in your town.

Follow these steps to restart your heating system

  1. Locate the power switch on your furnace and flip it to the ‘OFF’ position.
  2. Locate the switch on your circuit breaker panel for your heating system and also flip it to ‘OFF.’ NOTE: Do not touch your circuit breaker with wet hands. Also, if you notice a burning smell coming from your circuit breaker panel or detect any signs of electrical damage, contact an electrician, and do not touch anything.
  3. Wait 15 minutes and then turn the power back on to your furnace via the circuit breaker and on the switch on the unit itself.

These are the steps you would take to restart a modern furnace. Older natural gas-powered units may require you to reignite the pilot light. If you have a more dated unit in your home, it’s recommended for you to contact a heating professional for assistance.

More furnace troubleshooting tips

The above steps will help you with restarting your furnace, but we wanted to provide you with additional troubleshooting tips if you’re still experiencing an issue.

Replace your filter

Newer furnaces have a safety mechanism in place that prevents the unit from starting if the air filter is clogged and dirty. A filter that’s chock full of dirt and dust can restrict air flow from your furnace and, in turn, this could cause the appliance to work overtime to try and keep your home warm and comfortable. This could lead to premature wear and tear on your furnace and, perhaps, even an untimely breakdown.

It’s crucial that you swap your air filter out on a monthly basis. If you aren’t sure what size or MERV-rating you need for your replacement filter, check the specifications on the frame of the filter that’s already installed with your furnace. Take this information to your local hardware or home improvement store, and you should be able to locate the proper replacement. Also, not only does a dirty air filter cause issues for your furnace, but it can also jeopardize your home’s indoor air quality.

Check your thermostat

If your home doesn’t feel as warm as it should, check your thermostat. Ensure that it is on the proper ‘HEAT’ setting and wasn’t accidentally switched over to ‘COOL’ or ‘OFF.’ Also, make sure that the temperature is properly set on the device to the desired level for your family.

If your thermostat operates on batteries, you may need to replace them. Often, thermostat batteries that are nearly out of power will prevent the proper signals from being sent to your furnace from the thermostat to tell it when to cycle on and off. Also, if your thermostat is wired, check to ensure that the wiring isn’t frayed or otherwise damaged and in need of repair/replacement.

Take a look at your vents

If there are certain rooms in your home that don’t feel toasty and comfortable, check the vents. Make sure they aren’t blocked by furniture, rugs, curtains, or by anything else. When there’s something in front of the vents, this restricts air flow into the room. This means that warm air from your heating system isn’t able to be pushed out through your ducts and out through the vents in your home.

You should also regularly wipe off or vacuum your vents to prevent a build-up of dirt and dust. These materials could get pushed out into your room when your heat is on, and this could also cause problems for your home’s indoor air quality.

Additional furnace protection!

You should also consider enrolling in our Heating Repair Plan before you may need it. When you’re enrolled in this valuable plan and a covered problem occurs with your furnace, you can simply pick up the phone and give us a call. We will send a skilled and experienced heating technician from our service provider network to your home to diagnose and treat the problem so your family isn’t left to suffer in a miserably cold home for too long.

Have questions or concerns about what the repair plan provides for your family? Feel free to call us, or you can chat with a customer service representative by clicking the ‘Click to Chat!’ tab on the right side of the page.