When you turn your thermostat on on a cold day, you expect it to respond by telling your vents to blow out warm air. If it is working properly, it will and soon enough your home will be warm. But, things do not always work as they should. Stay informed and be prepared for what could go wrong with your heating system by reading more about these problems that could explain your heating woes.
First of all, check that your thermostat is on and it is at a temperature that should tell the heat to activate. If it is on and set properly, but you are still having problems, you may need to investigate your thermostat further.
One classic sign of a thermostat problem is if you are noticing that the temperature in your home doesn't remain steady, but fluctuates back and forth. At one moment, it seems to be quite warm, but at the next, it is freezing cold in your home and you never adjusted the thermostat to make this happen. The thermostat is more than likely not reading temperatures correctly and needs to be recalibrated by a professional.
Some Heat Loss
You may still be feeling heat coming from your vents, but it just doesn't seem to be as powerful as it once was. It definitely seems that your system is not running as efficiently as it once did.
If you have radiators, they may be trapping air and causing the system to slow down. You can fix this problem by calling a professional to bleed the lines.
Otherwise, the problem is most likely in your ducts. You may have a blockage or a leak. There are many different places that a blockage could occur in your home and without calling a professional out to diagnose the problem, you likely won't have any idea where it is blocked.
Duct leaks allow heat to escape before warming your rooms and is something that a professional has to assess and repair as well.
Pilot Light Problems
Your furnace has a pilot light that has to stay lit constantly. The flame should also be a strong one, indicated by a blue color instead of a yellow one that you would see when you light a candle.
If the pilot light is not lit at all, your system will not produce any heat. You can try and light the pilot light. If it lights, hopefully the problem is fixed. If it doesn't, you should check your gas supply.
A weak pilot light flame is a serious problem. It could cause your home to fill with carbon monoxide, which is fatal. Call a professional (such as one from Clark's Plumbing & Heating Corp) to deal with a pilot light that isn't quite right.
While these problems are not all of the things that can go wrong with a heating system, it does explain the ones that happen more frequently. None of these problems are things that you should try and fix yourself, but with this information you may be able to safely diagnose the problem and call a professional.