What to Do When Your Heater Wont Turn Off!

It's not unheard of for heating systems to have a glitch once in a while. It could be as simple as a bad thermostat or an electrical issue. If your gas furnace won't shut off, here are a couple steps you can take to get a correctly working furnace again.

Check the Air Filter

A dirty air filter creates issues for many homeowners and their HVAC system. Here's why. It restricts airflow, forcing your furnace to work harder and run longer to satisfy your desired temperature.

This increases wear and tear on your furnace, as well as the odds of a breakdown and early failure.

It can also make your furnace overheat and shut off for a time to cool down. Then it will keep duplicating this process when your furnace turns on. This is called short cycling. In addition to wearing out your furnace more quickly, it can increase your heating bill and make your home feel unpleasant.

We recommend replacing flat filters monthly and pleated filters every three months. If you can't remember the last time you got a new furnace filter, pull it out and hold it up to the light. If you can't detect light through your filter, it's too dusty and you should replace it.

If the matter was connected to a clogged air filter, replacing it with a fresh filter should solve this common problem when your heat won't turn off. If not, we recommend checking your thermostat settings next.

Check the Thermostat

Your thermostat runs your furnace and basically tells the unit when to turn on and off. It's usually to blame when your furnace won't stop running.

Sometimes having the heat turn off is as simple as adjusting a wrong thermostat setting.

Make Sure Your Thermostat is Set to “Auto”

Your thermostat has two settings, “auto” and “on,” that manage your heating system's blower motor.

“Auto” indicates the furnace blower will only run when the furnace does.

“On” means the furnace blower will run constantly. This constant air flow can help with heat distribution but will also increase your power bill and increase wear and tear on your furnace.

If your thermostat is set to "on," it will seem like your furnace is not turning off, but it's really just the furnace blower you're noticing. Switching it to "auto" should resolve the problem. It will also help you spend less money on your energy costs.

Check Your Temperature Setting

If your thermostat won't turn off heat, compare the temperature setting to the room temperature. If it's higher than the room air temp, your furnace will keep running until it reaches your desired temp.

Keep in mind that if it's extremely cold outside, your furnace will have to operate much longer than usual to keep your home cozy. This is due to a large temperature difference between the cold air outside and the warm indoors.

As a check, you can try reducing the thermostat to correspond with the room. Then, wait a couple of minutes. This should make the furnace shut off in a few minutes.

Put in Fresh Batteries

If you have a programmable thermostat, it's likely battery powered. You can test replacing the batteries to see if that resolves the problem. If it doesn't or if there's wiring to your electrical system, switch it to "off."

If your furnace won't shut off after you switch it to "off," you will need to turn off the power.

Turn Off the Power

Thermostat seems to be working fine but your furnace still won't turn off? There are two places you can shut off the power to your heating unit: at the breaker box and at its dedicated power switch.

  1. Head to your breaker box and find the breaker labeled "furnace." Move the breaker switch to the right to cut power.
  2. Next, look for the specific power switch to your heating system. It looks like a light switch and is located on or near your furnace. Move the switch down to cut power.
  3. Your furnace should be shut off now.

If you had to switch off your system at the breaker, contact us at 847-250-6729 for professional service, as you may need furnace repair.

What Causes a Furnace to Keep Running?

Occasionally fixing this problem can be as simple as changing your air filter or changing thermostat settings. In other situations, you might need a professional when your heater won't shut off.

Fan Limit Switch Needs to Be Replaced

The furnace fan limit switch controls your furnace's blower motor. If the switch goes out, it might sound like your furnace running nonstop, even though just the blower is going.

You might notice a furnace error code if there's a problem with the limit switch. Your furnace will speak using a blinking red light on the front of your heating system.

Our Experts can diagnose and fix any issues you're having with your furnace blower motor. Sometimes this can involve replacement parts, like the control board, faulty wiring or the fan switch itself.

Faulty Thermostat

Like anything else in your home, your thermostat can break down as time passes and need to be replaced. If you're due for a new one, ask us about installing a smart thermostat.

These thermostats make it easy to save energy, because they create an energy-efficient heating and cooling schedule based on your preferences. Additionally, you'll be able to set and keep tabs on your thermostat from just about anywhere with your phone.

Air Ducts Are Leaking

Your furnace relies on ductwork to circulate hot air to vents across your home. If your home or ductwork is older, your furnace might be running all the time because the ductwork is leaking hot air in the attic.

Diagnosing this leaky ductwork and other airflow issues can be difficult to troubleshoot on your own, since it's hidden behind walls and ceilings. Our Experts can help with diagnosing and handling any air duct repair service that you need.

Depend on Our Experts for All Your Furnace Repair Needs

Troubleshooting furnace problems can be annoying, particularly when it affects your comfort, energy efficiency and heating bill. When it comes to furnaces, there's a reason why we say we're Experts in our field. You can depend on our ACE-certified technicians to resolve your problem quickly and affordably. And what's even better, we stand behind our HVAC system repairs with a 100% satisfaction guarantee for one year.* Call us at 847-250-6729 to schedule your appointment now.

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