Is Your Furnace Telling You It Needs Repair?

Those Funny Noises It Makes May Not Be So Funny, After All

This man clearly regrets having ignored his furnace’s pleas for help. Now he has to wear a hat indoors.

With chilly nights and rainy days, Southland homes do require use of a furnace pretty regularly in the wintertime. While it may not snow very often, it’s always more pleasant to return to a cozy, warm home at the end of the day. That’s why it’s so important to make sure your furnace is in top condition at all times.

As you might guess, a poorly maintained system leads to higher energy bills, as well as colder rooms and stuffy air. Let’s review the noises you might be hearing from a problem furnace, and what you can do about it. Don’t ignore these warning sounds that signal your equipment needs maintenance and/or repair.

Pows and Kabooms!

Assuming your furnace hasn’t blown up (let’s not even go there!), if you hear a bang or boom, it may signal a dirty burner and subsequent ignition problems. The gas buildup and ignition is what’s causing the noise. Don’t mess around with this one. Call a qualified HVAC technician to have a look. While it may not be a complicated repair, one is necessary to avoid turning your furnace into a major fire hazard.

Whines and Squeaks!

Sometimes a customer will describe a whine or even squeaking noise coming from their furnace. This could be related to the ball bearings on the actual blower motor. While these are normally sturdy little components that last decades without incident, if they get overheated or your capacitors fail, they in turn can break down too. Again, don’t let what could be just a minor fix turn into a major repair because the warning signs were ignored.

Rattle and Hums!

Who knew the band U2 and HVAC had so much in common? If you’re hearing humming from your furnace, chances are it’s not Bono in your basement. It may signal a problem with your transformer. While not an emergency, your blower motor may be running out of lubrication, or your capacitor is on the fritz. It could also signal a loose transformer box. In any case, it’s worth an inspection from a qualified HVAC technician to make sure everything is working as it should.

Clicks and Clacks!

This is one to take seriously. As with the random kaboom!, a clicking noise could mean your gas ignition system isn’t functioning properly. Like an empty cigarette lighter that clicks without igniting, your equipment may have a clog or broken gas valve. A flame sensor or thermocouple may also have failed. Don’t risk a gas leak or fuel buildup in your furnace area. Call an HVAC tech as soon as you can to check it out.

Here’s a secret: most furnace problems come about from lack of maintenance. In other words, a regular inspection from your HVAC professional can head off a lot of the problems that otherwise might appear when they’re least welcome. So get that furnace inspected, and enjoy quiet indoor comfort all winter long.


Have you had your furnace inspected? If not, you could be paying far more for energy than you have to otherwise. Make sure a qualified HVAC professional has a look at your equipment and maintains it properly. The savings will last you all year round. Call Air-Tro today at (626) 357-3535.