My Heater is Blowing Cold Air! Now What?

Young man feel cold at home.


A recent polar vortex sent homeowners across the nation reaching for the thermostat and the heater decides to blow cold air. With the potential for further cool temperatures during an unusual Florida winter, what can you do to fix this problem before the next cold snap? Here are a few troubleshooting tips to help get the heat back on.

Is the Fan ON?

When the fan setting on your thermostat is set to ON, air is constantly blowing out of your vents. If the furnace happens to be off while the fan is still on, the air being emitted will feel cool.

It is not uncommon for a Florida home to have the fan constantly set to ON, as it will circulate air throughout the house to keep things cool.

If this was the problem, move the setting to AUTO. This will turn the fan off when the furnace is not heating and on when the furnace is heating to keep warm air blowing from the vents.

Check Your Filter

A dirty filter can wreak havoc on both heating and cooling systems. If your furnace filter is dirty, it can block the air from flowing appropriately through your furnace.

In some cases, this will cause the furnace to overheat and engage an automatic shutdown. This is a safety mechanism to prevent damage to the unit, but it will cause any air to come out cool.

Turn off your furnace and replace the filter. Some systems will require an expert HVAC technician to reset the safety switch.

Is There Water Pooling Around the Furnace?

If you notice your furnace surrounded by water, an issue with the condensate drain line may be the culprit. These lines are found in high-efficiency furnaces and remove condensation from the system.

If the line becomes clogged by mold, dust, or some other debris, the system will automatically shut down as the water backs up. Once the furnace shuts itself off, any air blowing will be cool.

If the problem does not resolve after taking steps to unclog the drain line, consult an HVAC professional to check for issues with the condensate pump itself.

Check the Pilot Light

Many older furnaces feature a pilot light that must remain lit for the heat to work. A rarely used heating system could certainly be impacted by an extinguished pilot light.

After taking the appropriate steps to relight your pilot light, your furnace should be heating normally. If it does not or the pilot light does not ignite, it is time to call for a pro.

Keep in mind, when trying to get your pilot light lit, ensure your thermostat is set to OFF.

If you need further help give us a call and we will be sure to solve your heater problem.

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