What is the most common problem with furnaces?

November 17, 2023
Furnace being serviced in Centerville, UT

It’s crazy how a single problem can cause so many issues, but that is exactly what restricted airflow does for your furnace. Discover why airflow restrictions are problematic, the most common causes, and signs this may be a problem for you.

Why Airflow Restrictions Are Problematic

Your furnace heats your home by drawing air in, heating it, pushing it back out, and then circulating it throughout your home. It can’t perform its intended function if the air can’t flow in and out of the system properly.

Not only does this prevent your home from heating properly, but it also causes excess strain on your system. This will push your utility bills higher. Plus, this will strain the system and cause preventable repairs and a shorter service life.

Most Common Causes of Airflow Restrictions

There are three primary causes of residential airflow restrictions. Two of these causes are easily solved on your own.

1. Clogged Air Filter

The most common cause of restricted airflow is neglected air filters. When these get too dirty, air cannot flow through them, blocking up the entire system. Plan to check your filter monthly, with a replacement every 30 to 90 days for the common 1- and 2-inch filters.

2. Closed or Blocked Vents

All of your vents should remain open and have adequate clearance to allow heated air to circulate around your home. The ideal clearance is 6 inches above and around each vent.

3. Circulating Fan Issues

The most common issue with circulating fans is when the wheel becomes dirty due to neglected maintenance. As the fan motor ages, it may not spin as quickly, reducing the amount of draw it creates.

Signs You May Have an Airflow Restriction

Many of the signs for restriction airflow are similar to other problems you may encounter. That’s why it’s important to start with looking for a restriction before looking for something more complex. These signs include:

  • Little or no air coming from the vents
  • Climbing energy consumption
  • Cold spots around your home
  • Furnace short cycling

For more than 30 years, homeowners around Centerville have trusted High Country HVAC to keep their furnaces running smoothly. Our NATE-certified technicians provide AC and heating repair, maintenance and installation alongside indoor air quality solutions. Call to schedule your furnace repair appointment with one of our award-winning technicians today.

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