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Warning Signs That Your Furnace Needs to Be Repaired or Replaced

Updated: Aug 14

Know the signs before it's too late for your health and finances.


Home heating costs make up 66% of your monthly energy bill. For Edmonton residents, heating is vital to surviving the cold. The city endures freezing temperatures for over half the year.

Your family's worse nightmare is the furnace breaking when it's -15* C or colder outside. Waiting hours for furnace repair during the busy season can lead to hypothermia. Before the temperature drops, check for signs that your furnace needs repair.

A quick furnace inspection will save you from the miserable cold this winter.


inspecting a furnace in an edmonton basement

Visual Signs That Your Furnace Needs Repair

Your home's furnace is often tucked somewhere out of the way and easily forgotten. Any visual changes to the furnace may go unnoticed for years.

Once a month, look in on the furnace to check the colour of the pilot light. A working pilot light burns a steady blue flame.

Yellow flames signal poor ventilation and dangerous carbon monoxide.

If you spot yellow flames or the carbon monoxide detector goes off, turn off the furnace. Open the doors and windows on your way out of the house. Contact an emergency furnace repair service when you're safe.

Dust, bacteria, and mould spores gather in the furnace during warm months. When you turn it on, the dust flies into the air and settles on the furniture.

Schedule a duct cleaning before you turn on the furnace for the season. It will cut down on your dusting chores and allergy problems.


Noises That Mean You Need Furnace Repair

It’s not unusual for your furnace to make a few soft noises as it runs. However, anything louder than normal is a sign your furnace needs repair.

Here are some common furnace noises and what they might mean:

  • Groaning - Dry blower motor bearings

  • Squealing - Loose blower motor belt

  • Rumbling -Pilot light or burner malfunction

  • Humming - Failing capacitor or fan

  • Rumbling in particular signals serious trouble and possible carbon monoxide exposure. Bring in a professional to assess the problem before using the furnace again.

Pay Attention to the Smells Around the Furnace

The first time you start the furnace for the year, it burns off dirt and smells bad. The burnt dust scent should go away after the first full furnace cycle. A lingering burnt dust smell could mean the inside of the furnace is dirty.

Smells that mean your furnace needs emergency repairs:

  • Hot plastic

  • Burned rubber

  • Something like formaldehyde

  • Smoke

  • Sulphur

These smells won't burn off after a few moments and could cause health problems. Turn off the furnace the moment you notice these scents. Ventilate the house and contact us to inspect your furnace immediately.


Take Care of Your Furnace As Soon as Possible

Don't get caught in the cold this winter. Pay attention to the signs that your furnace needs repair.

Maintain your furnace well, and it'll keep you warm for many more winters. Neglect your furnace, and it might not survive as long as the installer promised.

Let the professionals at Modern Air & Water take care of your furnace repair and maintenance needs. We proudly serve the Edmonton region and offer 24/7 emergency services. If you find out that you’ll need a replacement, we offer that too.

Use our online form to get a hassle-free quote on furnace cleaning services. We'll help make sure your family stays warm this winter.


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