After a few years of running your furnace every winter, you know how it’s supposed to sound. So you'll likely notice if the system starts making strange noises. Some noises — like a few small pops or clicks ahead of the warm air beginning to blow — are perfectly harmless. But others could damage the equipment or even threaten your health if you neglect them. Of all the furnace noises you might encounter, here are nine that justify an immediate furnace repair.
Scraping Furnace Noise
When you hear a sound like metal against metal, this could indicate the blower wheel has come loose from the motor shaft, or the wheel or motor mount has broken. No matter what the precise problem, you should power down your furnace if you hear a scraping sound and call a professional for an critical repair.
Loud Boom at Startup
When you start your furnace, the burners should ignite immediately and get started heating your home. A loud boom at startup probably means the burners are dirty, causing a delayed ignition. When the gas finally does ignite, you hear this scary furnace noise.
A small blast each time your furnace turns on could break the heat exchanger, a pricey repair that might require you to remove and replace the entire furnace. Don't wait to act when you hear a noise like that! Shut off your furnace if you hear a loud boom at startup, and avoid using it again until it has been repaired.
Squealing or Whining Sounds
A screaky or loud squealing furnace noise generally implies poor lubrication. Multiple parts of a furnace need lightweight oil to function smoothly. If the parts are not lubricated, components rub against each other and cause unnecessary wear and tear. Our recommendation is to have this situation remedied right away to avoid premature furnace failure.
The sound of a bird caught in your furnace definitely warrants investigation. If you hear chirping coming from the furnace upon the first activation of the season, it could simply mean your furnace is warming up after an extended period of no use. In this situation, the sound should dissipate after a few cycles.
However, if the chirping doesn’t subside, it could indicate the pulley for the blower motor is crooked or the mounting plate is contacting the blower wheel. This isn’t necessarily a safety threat, but the only choice to eliminate the irritating furnace noise is to have a technician conduct a repair.
Screeching noises are definite indicators that the fan belt is failing. If the fraying belt cracks, it could whip around inside the furnace, damaging other components and leading to a much more expensive repair. Avoid this hassle and cost by changing the worn-out belt sooner rather than later.
Some furnaces give off a rapid series of clicks when they turn on and off. This is completely normal. However, if the noise carries on longer than a minute or so, this could indicate an electrical problem. Don't risk an electrical fire! Simply call a furnace repair professional to fix the problem immediately.
The blower motor should run smoothly when the furnace turns on. If you discover a thwapping sound that quickly picks up speed as the blower gets going, this is a strong indication that something is stuck in the fan, and the blades are hitting it with each rotation. A straightforward repair should be all you need to get rid of this annoying furnace noise and prevent damaging the blower motor.
A few different problems can cause your furnace to rattle. It might be as easy as a loose door cover, so check this first. If the rattling continues, the most plausible root cause is a malfunctioning blower motor. Treat this as a warning sign to have your furnace repaired before it entirely fails.
Whistling or Vibrating
Noises such as a teapot whistle or the hum of a vibrating item are signals of a problem with the air intake vent. If the whistling or vibrating comes from a vent, your ductwork is likely loose, allowing conditioned air to release. These aren’t critical matters, but if you fix it soon, you’ll save money on your heating and cooling bills over the long haul.
Schedule Furnace Repair with Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning
Are you unsure whether the furnace noises you hear align with these descriptions? Perhaps nothing is wrong, but the only way to know for sure is to call a professional. At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we provide emergency furnace repair to get your unit back up and running as quickly as possible. Feel safe knowing that we stand behind our work with a one-year, 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re dissatisfied with our work anytime in the next 12 months, we’ll fix it! To find out more or to arrange a furnace repair visit, please contact a Service Experts office near you.