DIY Furnace Troubleshooting03/06/2015 Maintaining whole home comfort during the cooler months is one of the biggest concerns for a lot of people. Sure, you’d like that to extend year-round, but when winter gets its coldest, it feels a little more important. The scenario usually unfolds like this: your local Wisconsin Rapids weatherperson is predicting the coldest day of the year and your furnace decides to stop working. Now there’s no need to panic and call a furnace technician quite yet. There are a few things you can check on your own before calling them. Ensure your thermostat is set to “heat” – sure, it sounds obvious, but it’s easy to forget to set your thermostat to the correct position. Whether it’s an accidental change while cleaning or you had an unexpected rise in temperatures for a few days and didn’t need your thermostat, double check your thermostat’s setting. Check your filter – one of the most common causes of furnaces turning off unexpectedly is a dirty filter. When furnace filters get too dirty, air cannot pass through them as effortlessly. The furnace can detect this and will shut off the system. If you have an older furnace, it may not realize the problem and cause an even bigger problem. Newer furnaces have been designed to pick up on this issue and have a better track record of shutting the system down before it causes any further issues. Getting in the practice of changing your furnace filter every month can make certain you don’t wake up to a chilly house. Weak or dead batteries – if your thermostat operates with batteries, check it to ensure there isn’t a flashing low battery signal or another indicator that it’s time to replace your batteries. Other thermostats run off of your home’s electrical system and don’t have to worry about this. Check your switches – find your home’s circuit breaker panel and pinpoint the breaker that controls your furnace. You should be able to see if it is in the middle position or the Off position. If it is, cycle the breaker to Off and then re-set it back to the On position. If at any point you feel uncomfortable with the circuit breaker panel, please consult your local Wisconsin Rapids dealer or an electrician. The other switch to check looks just like a light switch, which could be the root of the problem. It’s your furnace switch and should be in the Up, or On, position. Because of its similarity to a light switch, it can be easily mistaken for one. Once On, give the furnace a few moments to turn on as many systems are programmed with built-in delays. Following these few steps before contacting your local Wisconsin Rapids technician can help you eliminate the easy things, and if there is still something wrong, it allows you to provide pertinent information to the technician if they end up coming out. Troubleshooting your furnace doesn’t have to be difficult, but ensuring you stay within your comfort zone is key too. There’s no need to take any chances and potentially do more damage to your furnace, so once you start feeling a little unsure, give your local furnace technician at Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc in Wisconsin Rapids a call.