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My Furnace Won’t Turn On — What Went Wrong?

Don't just throw up your hands in despair, you can take a closer look at what’s happening with your furnace.

Why Your Furnace Won’t Turn On

Different factors could be contributing to your furnace’s troubles. Whatever the reason, finding the source of the issue and having a professional repair it is key to your at-home comfort.

Potential Issues

  • water leaking from heating or cooling system
  • air conditioner won’t turn on
  • heating unit won't turn on

The condensate pump on your HVAC unit is used to pump out the water (condensate) that the unit produces during the heating and cooling process. In order to work properly, the condensate pump must be plugged in. If it is not, the HVAC unit won't function properly. If the condensate pump was not wired correctly into the safety circuits, the HVAC unit will continue to produce condensate and can cause water damage.

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  • air is too hot
  • heating unit won't turn on
  • no heat coming from vents

A blank thermostat usually means that there is no power running to it. The batteries may be dead.

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  • no power in some rooms
  • air conditioner won’t turn on
  • no power to devices
  • heating unit won't turn on
  • power is out
  • no heat coming from vents
  • no lights on the dryer display

A circuit breaker is the central source of electrical power in your home that supplies your network of electrical control circuits that run power to outlets, lights, alarms, etc with power. When your circuit breaker is overloaded with too much power for one reason or another, it trips. A tripped circuit breaker may cause you to lose power in one room or more, depending on how many rooms are powered by a circuit. It’s important to remember that tripped circuit breakers or blown fuses are not a cause, they are a symptom. Something else is going on with your system to cause it to overload.

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  • Auxiliary heat light is on
  • HVAC unit is shut off
  • heating unit won't turn on
  • air conditioner won’t turn on

The control board is crucial for your comfort at home. The board (or panel) has a lot of responsibility, including turning your system on and off, processing system commands, and letting you know when there's an issue. If the control board fails, your entire HVAC system will shut down because the entire system relies on it. A malfunction in the control panel could be a result of faulty wiring, a loss of electrical power to the system, or a burnout of the control board itself. If your HVAC system is not working properly (you notice things like poor airflow or inconsistent temperatures), check the control board. When it malfunctions, you’ll see the panel light up with LED lights, or you might find burnt spots on the board. These are signs that it’s time for a decision to repair or replace the equipment.

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  • no heat coming from vents
  • heating unit won't turn on

If your furnace isn't working, the issue could be as simple as a flipped power switch or emergency switch. A furnace switch can also be referred to as a furnace disconnect switch, which describes exactly what it does: disconnects furnace power to turn it on and off when needed. This switch often gets turned off accidentally, in situations such as by a contractor who was performing service, children playing around the furnace, or otherwise.

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  • no power in some rooms
  • power is out
  • air conditioner won’t turn on
  • heating unit won't turn on

There are many individual circuits in a home. Power reaches breakers via the street transformer (or the electric service drop), which is the bundle of electrical cables that run from the utility company's power pole to the connection at your house. If the service drop goes down (or electrical service fails), all power in your home will shut off won't work properly.

Let's Get It Fixed!

HomeX virtual experts will assess your issue (for free!) and can resolve simple problems.

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