A home heating system that won’t turn off can be just as much of a nuisance and a health issue as one that won’t turn on. If the heater in your Amherst home runs continuously, identifying the cause is essential. This may be an issue that you can quickly troubleshoot on your own, or it could require the assistance of a licensed HVAC professional. Following are four common reasons why home heating systems refuse to stop running.
1. You Haven’t Changed Your HVAC Air Filter in a While
If your HVAC air filter is clogged, your heater won’t be able to effectively distribute warm air to individual rooms or zones. Clogged filters impede the heater’s air supply line. A heater with an excessively dirty filter will have to work a lot harder, and it will also take a lot longer to create the desired indoor temperature. It may never hit that temperature, so it may never turn off.
HVAC air filters should be changed once a month in homes that use their HVAC systems on a daily basis. If you haven’t changed your air filter for several months, you may have problems with built-up debris at the air vents as well. Take some time to do light dusting in these areas to ensure that airflow isn’t being compromised at any exit point. Although putting a new filter in can be a quick and easy solution for a heater that won’t turn off, if you wait too long to do it, secondary problems can crop up fast.
2. Your Thermostat Is Broken or Malfunctioning
The thermostat is basically the brains of your home HVAC system. This is the component that registers the temperature of the indoor air and then tells your HVAC system that the air conditioner or heater needs to be turned on. When the indoor environment matches the temperature that you’ve set at the thermostat, the thermostat will tell your heating or cooling equipment to turn back off.
There are many reasons why a thermostat might fail in this area. It may be positioned in a location that prevents it from accurately reading the temperature indoors. This is often the case when thermostats are in locations that get lots of natural light, residual heat from nearby appliances, or constant exposure to cold drafts.
Sometimes, thermostat problems can be as simple as having the wrong temperature setting or having the thermostat set to the wrong mode of functioning. For instance, if there are multiple residents in your home, someone may have cranked the heater all the way up. Many people set thermostats especially high when they’re cold and want to warm up quickly. Thus, if your house is sweltering and the heater is still busily working away, the first thing that you should check is the temperature setting at the thermostat.
However, if your home is at a moderate temperature but the heater is still running, check to see whether the thermostat is set to the “AUTO” mode of functioning, or if it’s been toggled over to the “ON” position. When the thermostat is set to “ON”, the system fan will continue blowing air even though the heater has stopped actively working. Switching it back to “AUTO” will ensure that the HVAC fan automatically turns off as soon as the desired indoor temperature is reached. Although a broken thermostat will need to be replaced, you can always try changing the thermostat batteries before scheduling replacement or repairs.
3. Your Heater Has Mechanical Problems
There are several mechanical problems that can cause heaters to run non-stop. Your heater might have issues that include a faulty heat limiter switch, a damaged primary controller, or a broken water checking system if you use radiators.
All of these problems require professional diagnosis and service. If you attempt to find and resolve mechanical problems on your own, you may compromise your manufacturer warranty, cause additional issues, or perform a repair that results in ongoing safety hazards. Thus, after you’ve checked your thermostat and thermostat settings and have checked and replaced the HVAC air filter, the next step is to schedule professional service.
4. Gaps, Cracks, or Other Air Leaks Are Preventing the Home From Warming Up
Leaky ducts, collapsed ductwork, or gaps, cracks, and other air leaks throughout the building could be causing warm air to escape your home at an accelerated rate. When major air leaks or other sources of air loss exist, the heater will run continuously and without ever being able to provide the level of indoor comfort you want. Scheduling a comprehensive HVAC system inspection is one easy way to identify and resolve all areas of air loss. Once gaps and cracks are sealed, and damaged HVAC duct work is repaired, your heater should be able to function normally.
Residents of the greater Amherst, New York, area can count on Heatwave Heating & Cooling for fast, reliable heating and cooling service. We also provide air purification and air duct cleaning services. If your heater refuses to turn off, we can find and resolve the underlying problem. Call us today to request an estimate or to schedule a service visit.