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Heater Starting to Lose Heating Power? Some Possible Reasons Why

dog-under-blanketYou just want your heating system to get through the rest of the winter and into spring—but now it’s showing signs that something is wrong. You’re not getting the amount of heating you expect or need from the system, and you find yourself pushing up the thermostat higher and higher than normal to try to make up for it.

First—stop adjusting the thermostat. If you’re doing that, something is wrong with your heater that needs heating repair in Staten Island, NY. Trying to force it to work harder by changing the thermostat setting will probably just worsen the problem, even leading to a full breakdown. There are some checks you can make regarding the heater’s drop in power, but often you’ll end up needing to call for HVAC pros to come to your house to see what’s wrong and then fix it.

Why a Heater May Lose Its Power

There’s a range of possible reasons for a heater to put out less heat than usual. A few only require small changes. Others call for repairs. The worst-cast-scenario is the heater needs a full replacement.

  • Clogged air filter: This is the simplest potential problem. The air filter in a forced-air heater like a furnace or heat will gradually build up enough dust and debris to create a thick blockage against airflow. This will cause airflow to drop throughout the system, and less heated air will come from the vents. Replace the filter with a clean one to see if this helps (and keep up with regular changes every 1 to 3 months going forward.)
  • Miscalibrated thermostat: The thermostat is sensing temperatures incorrectly so it registers that the interior of the house is warmer than it actually is. It will turn the heating system off early before it has a chance to deliver the comfort you want. Rather than keep pushing up the thermostat, have a professional recalibrate it—or even put in a newer, more precise model of thermostat.
  • Leaking ductwork: The heater may be working fine. The problem is some of the heated air isn’t getting to the rooms because it’s disappearing out leaks along the ducts. You’ll need professional duct repairs to solve this.
  • Dirty burners: If too much grime builds up along the burners in a gas furnace, they are less likely to turn on. Only a few of the burners will work, dropping down the amount of heat available to warm up the house.
  • Over the hill heater: Unfortunately, if your heating system is more than 15 years old, the decline in heating is likely just a sign that it needs to be replaced. A technician may be able to fix the problem, but it will be only temporary and you’ll run into more and more repair expenses until you’re paying far more than the cost of replacing the old system. Sometimes a replacement is the best choice for saving money (and protecting your comfort).

Bob Mims Heating & Air Conditioning has served Staten Island’s Heating and A/C needs since 1955. Call us for heating help!

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