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What to Do if Your Home’s Heating System Won’t Turn On

The brutal cold of the Lake Forest winter can be dangerous, and with public schools in the region taking no chances during major cold weather events, many families find they need longer periods of heating to maintain comfortable indoor conditions while the kids are home from school. As your heating system gets a hefty workout through such weather, the risk of a breakdown is greater if you’ve skipped your annual heating maintenance. There may be a moment when you expect your equipment to operate and find that it won’t turn on. Before you call for repair, there are some important troubleshooting steps to take that may save you the stress and expense of that service call.

Troubleshoot Your System Issues

There are some surprisingly simple situations that can prevent your heating system from operating correctly. Whether you’re dealing with a furnace or a heat pump, problems with commands, energy supply and airflow can result in a system malfunction. Overheating can also be an issue in some systems. Some equipment may even have a delay feature. Take the following steps in troubleshooting your equipment’s malfunction:

  1. Error code – if you have an inoperative furnace that shows an error code on the display, record the code for later reference if you need to call your service provider.
  2. Thermostat – incorrect settings can prevent your heating equipment from turning on. Make sure that the settings are higher than the registered room temperature. Verify that the thermostat is set for heating as well. A youngster could have made an inadvertent change while admiring the buttons and numbers on your controls. Check the battery levels as well. A setting adjustment or battery change may be the only fix needed.
  3. Energy sources – check your electrical box for any tripped switches, resetting as needed. If this is your issue and the switch trips again, you need to call your contractor for service. Check your gas valves as well if you are dealing with an inoperative furnace. Make sure that valves are open and that other appliances also have fuel. An outage could affect your entire neighborhood, so check with a neighbor or the utility company if you find that your gas lines are the issue.
  4. Obstructions – check for issues at the vents that may be restricting airflow. Check your filter as well. A dirty filter can lead to problems such as overheating, and your system may fail to operate due to excessive temperatures.

Perform a Manual Reset

If your furnace still won’t operate, you can attempt a manual reset. Specifics for your system may be detailed in the owner’s manual. In general, though, you’ll follow these steps:

  1. Shut off power to the furnace at the fuse box.
  2. Adjust settings to call for heat, dropping them below the room temperature.
  3. Restore power.
  4. Press the reset button if there is one.

A successful reset should result in heating activity right away. If your heating system continues to be inoperative, you will need professional support.

Contact Your HVAC Contractor

If you haven’t resolved your heating issues with these troubleshooting measures, a service call should be completed promptly. Ireland Heating & Air Conditioning is available for such emergencies on a 24-7 basis, and we work quickly to identify issues to ensure that your family’s comfort needs are met even during the most serious weather conditions. We also offer heating maintenance to ensure that your equipment is operating safely and efficiently prior to each year’s heating season. If these troubleshooting measures have not resolved your heating issues, don’t hesitate to call our hotline for repair support.