Average Repair Costs for 4 Typical Furnace Issues

November 30, 2021

Your furnace is an integral part of your home. Without one, you wouldn’t be able to stay warm during cold weather. Yet furnaces can have some issues that are more common than others.

Let’s review these problems and about what they might cost to correct so you know before you call an HVAC technician. Some of the most common furnace repair problems involve:

  • Furnace won’t turn on
  • Furnace doesn’t stay lit
  • Furnace won’t blow hot air
  • Furnace won’t turn off

1. Furnace Won’t Turn On

There are a couple of reasons why your furnace won’t turn on, so make sure to check all of them.

  • Is your thermostat set right? Make sure it’s on “heat,” “auto” and that your desired temperature is higher than the room’s current temperature. If you use a programmable thermostat, make sure it has new batteries.
  • Is the circuit breaker tripped? Your furnace can’t operate if it doesn’t have electricity. Reset the switch if it’s facing the outside of the electrical panel.
  • Is the furnace switch off? Your furnace has a power switch found on or close to it. Since this switch resembles a light switch, it’s easy to unintentionally turn it off. If it was off, it may take your furnace a few minutes to turn on.
  • Is the air filter clean? A dusty air filter can cause a lot of issues for your furnace. Get a new one if you can’t see light through it.

Estimated Repair Cost

This problem can be complicated, so the estimated cost to repair it varies according to what’s wrong.

2. Furnace Won’t Stay Lit

Your furnace uses a specific sequence when it starts heating your home.

  1. Your thermostat notices the temperature has fallen and tells your furnace to start running.
  2. The draft inducer fan turns on to pull in fresh air for combustion.
  3. The gas valve unlocks for the burners, which are lit electronically.
  4. The flame sensor tells your furnace the burners have been lit.

If something is off during the sequence, your furnace will shut off as a preventive measure.

A couple of potential causes for this issue include:

  • Dirty or malfunctioning flame sensor. If the sensor doesn’t sense a flame, it will turn off your furnace to keep natural gas from spilling into your home. The ignition process corrodes flame sensors over time. While cleaning during annual furnace maintenance can help, yours may eventually need to be replaced.
  • Bad limit switch. This safety feature will turn off your furnace if it detects backdrafting. Backdrafting is hazardous, since carbon monoxide and natural gas can seep into your home. These switches can malfunction due to age, damage or dust buildup.
  • Old thermostat. If your thermostat isn’t working properly, your furnace won’t be able to run.
  • Dirty air filter. A dirty air filter can reduce airflow and force your furnace to shut down to prevent overheating. Make sure to replace yours every 30 to 90 days, or whenever you can’t see light through it.

Estimated Repair Cost

These costs are estimates, so it’s important to note yours may vary based on your furnace’s brand and model.

  • Flame sensor: $350–$500
  • Limit switch: $150–$300
  • Thermostat: $150–$350
  • Furnace filter: $10-$30

3. Furnace Won’t Blow Hot Air

In many instances, this problem is linked to a wrong thermostat setting or a dirty air filter that’s restricting airflow. Follow the steps above to fix the problem.

4. Furnace Won’t Turn Off

If it’s very cold outside or you like your home to be toasty, your furnace may be running for a long time.

If this isn’t the case, ensure your thermostat is set correctly and working properly. If your fan setting is at “on,” the blower motor will be running even when the furnace isn’t, so it’ll sound like your furnace is on all the time.

Otherwise, there might be an issue with the blower motor or your ductwork may be leaking air, forcing your furnace to run constantly to make up for the air loss.

Estimated Repair Cost

These costs are approximations, so it’s necessary to note yours may vary based on your furnace’s brand and model.

  • New blower motor: $250–$800
  • Seal ductwork: varies based on house size

West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services Can Resolve Your Furnace Issues Quickly and Affordably

Furnace problems can be a costly headache, but not when you work with West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services. We’ve been providing the quality, affordable furnace repair Hudsonville homeowners have trusted since 1986. Call us at (616) 669-3961 to request your free estimate today.