What to Do If Your Furnace Stops Working

Home comfort is a high priority for everyone, no matter where they live. If you ever find yourself in a cold building during the height of the February freeze, you’ll know how uncomfortable it can be. The issue is even more important in Canada as our cold winters can seriously impact a person’s health. It can also affect your pets or even damage your house. After a long day at work, you deserve to feel safe and snug in your own home.

In the event your furnace stops working, your best option is to call a heater repairman. However, here are some things that a technician might suggest you try before having him or her visit your home.

What to Do If Your Furnace Stops Working

Is it On?

You are no doubt thinking, “Of course, it is on!” but you might be surprised how often this happens. It’s not uncommon to not be able to figure out what’s wrong with a tool or appliance, only to discover that it has no power. Or was simply not turned on. Frustrating, right?

Take a few minutes to double-check the furnace’s power switch. We guarantee that this is far less embarrassing than calling in a repairman and having him to tell you that the switch was off. Also, double check that you have not lost power or that a breaker switch has not been tripped.

Check the Thermostat

Your furnace only turns on once the temperature in your home drops to a certain point. Double check your settings: is the furnace off because it has not been set to turn on yet? Do you have the thermostat set to “heat” and not “cool”? Run a test by setting the furnace ten degrees above the current temperature and see if it turns on.

Check your thermostat’s batteries. Many models have a warning light to indicate when the battery is low, but that might have malfunctioned. Have you been doing any remodeling near the thermostat that could have caused dust and dirt to clog up the control panel? Make sure the area is clean.


It is important for your furnace to have unobstructed air flow. If the intake and exhaust vents on the outside of your home are blocked, this will affect furnace function.

Be sure to also check your furnace filter. If the filter clogs, furnace efficiency drops and the unit has to work harder. That can cause the heat exchanger to overheat and the furnace to shut down entirely.

Blower Motor Panel

Is this panel door securely closed? Many furnaces have a safety featuring preventing them from operating if the door is partially open.

Gas Valve

Is the gas valve off? If you have a gas furnace, it will not operate without gas. Before turning this valve back open, it’s important to figure out why it was turned off  in the first place. If you smell gas at anytime, turn the valve off and call for help.

If these tips do not solve the problem, there is a problem that needs to be addressed. However, don’t fret: Hogg Mechanical has been the tri-cities’ heating and cooling experts since 1875. Our knowledgeable repair team has over 100 years’ experience in this field and will quickly diagnose and solve your problem. Call us today at 519-772-2010 and let the experts take the hassle out of your heating!

Image: indyedge / 123RF Stock Photo

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