Is Your Heater Making Any of These Noises?

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The common scenario in your home during this time of the year probably looks—and sounds—something like this: you set your thermostat to the desired temperature for your heater to come on. After a few minutes, you hear the fan of your furnace begin to whir. The reason this takes a few minutes is that the plenum has to actually heat up after the burners are lit, and the fan doesn’t start running until that point so it can deliver warmed air to the vents in your home.

Once you’ve heard that spinning, whirring blade and feel the rush of air through the vents, you don’t give it another thought and you go on with your day or your evening. But, what if you hear an unfamiliar noise at startup? Should you just pass it up as a fluke thing and ignore it? Probably not. It’s going to be best that you call for professional residential heating services in Denver, so we can assess your heater to see what’s going on. In the meantime, we’ve shared a few common problem noises below, along with what they can mean for your system.

Loud Boom/Bang at Startup

We’ll start with this sound, since it’s typically the most alarming. Sometimes, it’s not a huge deal. For instance, if it happens fairly consistently (not just at system startup), then it might have to do with the air ducts or the sheet metal siding of the furnace expanding and contracting. These are both the result of poor duct installation or improper furnace sizing, and should definitely be checked out by a pro.

If the banging or booming is only happening at system startup, then you’d be right to be concerned. It can be due to something as simple as a dirty furnace burner. But, that dirt allows gas to buildup, which causes a sort of “mini-explosion” when the furnace burners do ignite. While it might not affect your home right away, this process rattles the heat exchanger, which can eventually crack and leak dangerous carbon monoxide into your home.

Squealing Sound

Any type of squealing you hear coming from your furnace system can be due to a lack of lubrication or a blower fan belt that’s wearing down. This means it’s an easy fix for our pros… but letting it go on for too long can lead to malfunctioning fan, and your furnace can fail on you right when you need it the most.

Low Rumbling

If you hear a low rumbling coming from your furnace, it’s most likely when you’re right next to the unit, right? It’s hard to tell you in a blog post exactly what this is since we’d need to see and hear the furnace. However, one possible explanation is that the furnace’s pilot flame is too low.

Check the flame to ensure it’s blue rather than yellow or orange. Otherwise, a rumbling noise can be attributed to a dangerous carbon monoxide leak, depending on the unit, so shut it off and call for help if you believe this to be the case.

Get peace of mind by calling Bell Plumbing and Heating, the company metro area homeowners have been trusting for over 90 years!

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