If you’re like many Americans, you’re probably going to be running your furnace every day this winter. As you reach peak system operation over the next few months, it’s important to ensure your heating equipment remains in great shape. That’s why if your furnace has suddenly started making strange noises, you may be concerned. While some furnace sounds are completely normal, others may indicate a larger problem. Keep reading to learn about that noise coming from your furnace, and remember that our experts at Carter Services are here for all your heating system needs.
The 5 Most Common Heating System Sounds
- Banging: Banging is one of the more common furnace noises, and is typically caused by sediment build-up. When debris accumulates in your heating system, it may interact with the burners to create that little mini-explosion you are hearing. Banging can also be the sound of your ducts expanding and contracting during the wintertime. In rare cases, banging and rumbling can indicate there is a leak in your heat exchanger. This is extremely serious, and could even lead to carbon dioxide exposure. It’s quite possible your system simply needs cleaning, but to be on the safe sign, always call a technician if you do hear banging come from your furnace.
- Whining: A high-pitched whining or screeching noise coming from your system usually indicates there is an internal mechanical issue, such as a broken fan motor or a malfunctioning fan belt. Both of these problems can be solved with a repair from an experienced heating tech.
- Rattling: The sound of something loose, rattling around in your furnace often means that a small part or component has broken off. While a little rattling sound may be nothing, it’s still a good idea to call a technician to inspect this problem, since waiting to deal with a mechanical issue could force you to replace your heating system altogether in a worst-case scenario.
- Chirping: A chirping furnace is fairly common when you first fire up your system in the winter, following months of disuse. If this chirping persists, on the other hand, you will want to call a technician for a tune-up, as your furnace may be experiencing an issue with the fan belt.
- Clicking: When your furnace emits a clicking sound, it almost always means there’s a problem with the flame sensor, or a connection issue between the ignition and the gas (assuming you have a gas furnace.) Think of this clicking as the same thing you hear when you go to turn a gas stove on, and it takes a minute to ignite. Gas problems are always pretty serious, and since the last thing you want in your home is any kind of gas leak, call a technician right away if you hear this noise coming from your system.