If you've had your furnace for several winter seasons, you know how it’s supposed to sound. So you'll likely notice if the unit starts making weird sounds. Some noises — like a few small pops or clicks ahead of the warm air beginning to blow — are normal and harmless. But others could impair the equipment or even endanger your health if you neglect them. Of all the furnace noises you might encounter, here are nine that warrant an immediate furnace repair.
Scraping Furnace Noise
When you hear a sound like metal against metal, this could suggest the blower wheel is becoming detached from the motor shaft, or the wheel or motor mount is broke. No matter the precise problem, you should power down your furnace if you notice a scraping sound and call a professional for an emergency repair.
Loud Boom at Startup
When you fire up your furnace, the burners should ignite without delay and start heating your home. A loud boom at startup likely means the burners are dirty, which causes a delayed ignition. When the gas finally does ignite, you hear this frightening furnace noise.
A small blast each time your furnace turns on could bust the heat exchanger, a costly repair that may necessitate you to remove and replace the entire furnace. Don’t let it come to this! Switch off your furnace if you hear a loud boom at startup, and do not activate it again until it has been repaired.
Squealing or Whining Sounds
A high-pitched squealing furnace noise usually signifies poor lubrication. Multiple parts of a furnace need lightweight oil to run smoothly. Without this, components rub against each other and cause unnecessary wear and tear. Look into having this problem remedied right away to prevent premature furnace failure.
The sound of a bird trapped in your furnace definitely warrants investigation. If you perceive chirping during the first furnace cycle of the season, it could merely mean your furnace is warming up after months of no use. In this situation, the sound should stop after a few cycles.
However, if the chirping continues, it could indicate the pulley for the blower motor is crooked or the mounting plate is coming in contact with the blower wheel. This isn’t automatically a safety hazard, but the only choice to eliminate the pesky furnace noise is to have a technician perform a repair.
Screeching noises are clear and certain signs that the fan belt is deteriorating. If the fraying belt breaks, it could create all kinds of issues inside the furnace, damaging other components and resulting in a much more expensive repair. You can protect yourself from this unexpected expense by changing the worn-out belt sooner rather than later.
Some furnaces give off a quick series of clicks when they switch on and off. This is completely normal. That said, if the noise carries on longer than approximately 60 seconds, this could suggest an electrical complication. Don't risk your home catching fire by a faulty electrical situation; call a furnace repair professional to correct the problem promptly.
The blower motor should operate properly when the furnace activates. If you notice a thwapping sound that rapidly picks up speed as the blower gets going, this likely means something is caught in the fan, and the blades are smacking it with each rotation. A straightforward repair should be all that's required to get rid of this pestering furnace noise and prevent damaging the blower motor.
A rattling furnace can be caused by multiple issues. It might be as simple as a loose door cover, so check this first. If the rattling remains, the most likely root cause is a malfunctioning blower motor. Treat this as a warning sign to have your furnace repaired before it breaks down completely.
Whistling or Vibrating
When your furnace has an air intake vent issue, you will often hear a whistling or humming vibration sound. If the whistling or vibrating comes from a vent, your ductwork is likely loose, allowing conditioned air to release. These aren’t urgent matters, but if you have them fixed quickly, you’ll pay less on your heating and cooling bills long term.
Schedule Furnace Repair with Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning
Are you uncertain whether the furnace noises you hear match these descriptions? Perhaps nothing is wrong, but if you want to be 100% sure, the easiest thing to do is to call a professional. At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we provide emergency furnace repair to get your heater back up and running as fast as possible. Feel safe knowing that we stand behind our work with a one-year, 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re disappointed with our work anytime in the next 12 months, we’ll set things right! For more information or to arrange a furnace repair visit, please get in touch with a Service Experts office near you.