7 Warning Signs that Your Furnace Needs to be Repaired

December 16, 2020

Your furnace works hard day and night to maintain the temperature that you’re most comfortable with. Checking, servicing and maintaining it is essential for keeping it in excellent condition. You’ll thank yourself when the coldest days of Winter arrive in London ON.

A reliable furnace heating system is a critical element of all our homes. It makes your life easier and your home a more comfortable place. Reliable furnaces are especially important for the long Canadian winters we know. Mechanical problems should be uncommon for a professionally installed and serviced furnace system. However, sometimes repair work is needed throughout its lifetime. A certified HVAC expert should always handle repairs. 

The first step is discovering the problem before it becomes worse. A broken furnace can reduce your home’s durability or be harmful to your health.

There are some clear warning signs that homeowners need to be aware of. This article will educate you so that you know when your furnace needs repairs.

The furnace doesn’t reliably turn on

As a furnace gets old, you might experience some trouble turning it on and keeping it running. If you need to try more than a couple of times to start the unit, it likely requires repair work.
Basic functionality problems like this often stem from damaged thermostats or disconnected wiring. Replacing the affected parts should quickly resolve the issue.

The furnace unexpectedly shuts down

When your furnace regularly shuts down unexpectedly, it’s unable to complete a heating cycle. That means the unit is working harder than it should be to reach and maintain a temperature. The unit working harder means it will deteriorate faster, shortening its life span and requiring repairs sooner.

This warning sign could mean many things. Repeated cycling could signify that the fan motor is dying, or it might only mean that the heat sensor needs to be cleaned. A clogged filter or improper air circulation can also be the causes.

Rapidly rising utility costs

Low temperatures during Winter can make your furnace work much harder than usual. However, a furnace that’s struggling to get the job done even in moderate temperatures may have deeper problems. The first step is to check the furnace filter, as a dirty filter can obstruct your furnace’s airflow and make it work overtime to make even slight adjustments to the temperature. That’s rough on your furnace, and even harsher on your utility expenses.

For details on energy efficiency regulations for gas furnaces, you can visit the Government of Canada’s website.

There is a distinct burnt electrical smell around the furnace

An electrical burning odour could indicate an overheated blower motor in your furnace. Under normal operating conditions, the furnace should shut itself off if it begins to overheat.

 If you notice a metallic or burning electrical odour, begin by replacing your unit’s filter. A clogged air filter may be causing your unit to work overtime and overheat.

There are other strange smells

Dusty and dirty smells coming from your furnace can be fixed by cleaning dust out of the furnace and replacing the filters frequently. 

 Rotten eggs or sulphur smells are also essential to be aware of. Natural gas companies inject this scent into fuel lines to alert homeowners of danger. If you smell rotten eggs, sulphur, or any foul smell from your furnace, you should ventilate the room and immediately call a professional.

 Click here for more detailed information on furnace smells and their meaning.

The furnace makes strange noises

All furnaces make noise, but it can indicate a severe problem if you hear loud and persistent ones. If you start hearing strange pops and squeaks from your furnace, it may mean that something is loose or displaced. You’ll likely need to have a part repaired or replaced within the unit.


Your furnace is blowing cool air

Is your furnace blowing cold air? If you keep cranking up the thermostat, but your home is still cold, it may be time to repair or replace your furnace. Cold air could mean a faulty pilot light, an electrical issue, or a leaking duct.


We recommend checking your furnace system at least once a month. If your furnace is 10+ years old, we recommend checking it even more frequently.

 By doing this and being aware of these warning signs, you can be more informed about your furnace’s condition. You’ll know when you need to call a professional for an inspection and potential repairs.

 For more information on home heating systems, you can visit our Ultimate Furnace Heating Guide.

Call us at Plumbhouse Plumbing, Heating,  & Electrical at (519) 453 4650. We are here to help you.


Published by
December 16, 2020 9:51 am

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