Most homes in the area rely on forced-air furnaces to stay warm in the winter. These furnaces heat the air via burners or electric coils, then blow the heated air through a series of ducts into the various corners of the home. It’s effective and inexpensive, which is why it’s such a common form of heating. But like any system, it can run into trouble from time to time. You need to be able to notice when that happens with your furnace, and call in a repair service when it does.
Homeowners should never attempt to formally diagnose a problem with their furnaces: that requires proper licensing and training. You can, however, note when something isn’t right with your furnace and call in a repair service. Generally speaking, anything that doesn’t match your system’s normal behavior is cause for concern.
More specifically, a lack of air flow from your system usually indicates a significant problem. The sooner you spot it, the better.
What Causes Low Air Flow?
Low air flow can be caused by a wide variety of issues, which is one of the reasons why it’s such a common indicator of trouble. The exact cause is something a professional technician can determine, but they tend to fall into one of two broad categories.
- A blockage of some sort in the ducts or in the system itself. This can include anything from a clogged filter to a crimp in the ducts to a breach somewhere.
- A lack of fan power pushing the air out of the system. This can stem from a problem with the fan motor, a loose fan belt, or perhaps a fan itself that’s broken or out of alignment.
Why Is Low Air Flow a Problem?
Low air flow is a problem for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it slows the rate at which your furnace warms the home. That in turn increases the monthly cost of running the system, as well as increasing the chances of a breakdown elsewhere. (The increased strain adds wear and tear to individual components.)
Beyond that, however, there’s another big problem with low air flow that can seriously damage your system. If the hot air isn’t flowing through the ducts, it almost always stays stuck in the heart of the furnace itself. That, in turn, can cause individual components to overheat and create a far more expensive repair issue in the process. With most modern furnaces, safety features are in place that will automatically shut the furnace off before the system overheats. This is beneficial because it alerts you to the nature of the problem and lets you call in a repair service. (Always turn your system off before doing so, even if it’s not running.) The bad news is that your system won’t function properly until it is repaired, which adds to the urgency of the issue.
If you detect low air flow in your furnace, call Westland Heating & Air Conditioning right away. We cover furnace repair services for homes throughout North Olmstead, OH.