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Short-Cycling Furnace

Why Does My Furnace Keep Turning On and Off?

Have you noticed the furnace in your Clinton, TN, home turning on and off for short periods? It runs, but it never completes a heating cycle. This situation is called short-cycling, and in this post, you’ll learn why it happens and how to fix it.

Why Is Short-Cycling Bad?

An average heat cycle for a furnace lasts seven to 20 minutes, with the system turning up to three times an hour. If the furnace only runs for a minute or two before turning off, it’s not properly heating the home.

Furthermore, the constant turning on and off wastes energy and your money. Not only are you spending more heating the home, but the wear and tear on the system is shortening its lifespan. A system that continues to short-cycle will need replacing sooner.

Common Causes of Short-Cycling

Getting to the bottom of what’s causing your furnace to run so much requires some troubleshooting, and most likely, a visit from a heating repair expert.

First, check your furnace’s filter. Is it dirty? A clogged filter can restrict airflow to the heat exchanger, resulting in the unit overheating, forcing the limit switch to turn off and turning the unit off.

Short-cycling might also happen if there is a problem with the thermostat. When the thermostat’s batteries go bad, this can cause miscommunication with the furnace and affect the heating cycle. Bad wiring can also cause this issue.

Other reasons for short-cycling include:

  • Damaged flame sensors.
  • Flue blockages.
  • Problems with the furnace’s ignition system.

If none of those issues are present, your furnace might not be the right size. Oversized systems heat the house too fast, and the system only runs for a short time. Homes with improperly sized furnaces use energy inefficiently and have higher heating costs.

Get Your Furnace Serviced Right Away

Don’t let your furnace drive you crazy this winter. Let our team of professionals at Melton Heating and Air Conditioning fix short-cycling issues for good! Reach out to us to schedule furnace repair today.

Image provided by iStock

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