Which Home Furnace Maintenance Projects I Can DIY, and When Should I Call a Professional?

We break down some easy fixes and determine when it's time to call a local furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA

Which Home Furnace Maintenance Projects I Can DIY, and When Should I Call a Professional?

When the winter rolls around, we rely heavily on our furnaces to keep us warm until the weather heats up again. So what if your furnace starts having issues? Should you try to fix it yourself or call for a furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA? That's an important question, and we have the answers. There are some issues that you can resolve at home, like an air filter change, and other more serious issues that will require an experienced professional. So before you call a local furnace repair service, find out what issues you can troubleshoot in case you start experiencing problems with your furnace this winter.

What Are Some Common Fixes for A Home Furnace?

Find out a which issues you can troubleshoot yourself before you call a furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA

man replacing dirty air filter in the ceiling of home
Air filters are common culprits for poor airflow in your living areas.

If you don’t know a lot about heating and cooling systems in your home, it can be tempting to call a service as soon as something goes haywire with your furnace. However, that is not always the case, and you could save a lot of money by taking the DIY route. Let’s get started with some of the more common problems the average homeowner may encounter and how to easily fix them by yourself.

1. Check on Your Thermostat

One of the most common issues with your furnace performance may not actually be your furnace, it could be your thermostat. By checking on your thermostat, you may be able to avoid a visit from your local furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA.

First, you should make sure that your thermostat has power and is accurately displaying the temperature. If you find that it is not, a likely cause is that your thermostat is out of battery. Luckily, batteries are easily replaceable and you won’t have to call a professional.

Dust is another common cause of older thermostat malfunction. Simply by dusting the inside of your electromechanical thermostat, you can improve the functionality and get your furnace back to working like new.

If you have performed these easy fixes and are still experiencing irregularities in your heating, it may be time to call a professional.

2. Change Your Air Filter

After checking on your thermostat, you should take a look at your air filters to see if they could be causing any issues. If you can’t remember the last time you replaced your air filters, it is likely that a dirty air filter is causing irregularities in your heating system. Dirty air filters prevent heat from reaching your living areas and you will end up putting unneeded stress on your furnace. Once you have changed the air filter, you should experience improved airflow and air quality in your living spaces.

3. Make Sure That Your Power Source Functioning

Though this may seem slightly obvious, you should check to make sure that your furnace has power before calling a furnace repair service. Check on any tripped breakers or potential blown fuses that could have shut down your furnace. Once you have verified that there are no noticeable electrical issues, try resetting your breaker box. If none of these electrical solutions start up your furnace, the problem is likely faulty wiring and requires expert attention.

4. Try Relighting The Pilot 

After you have tried all of the different solutions we have listed, the final step should be to try relighting the pilot. If it isn’t the electrical connection or air filter, it is likely the gas. First make sure that your gas valve is open and functioning properly. Next, make sure that your pilot light is fully depressed. Only after you perform these steps should you try to relight the pilot. To relight the pilot in your furnace you should first follow the manufacturer instructions to avoid causing any further problems. If you are unable to locate the manufacturer’s instructions, follow these steps:

  1. Turn pilot light dial to “OFF”
  2. Wait for 10 minutes
  3. Turn your gas valve to the pilot setting
  4. Manually light the pilot with a common household grill lighter
  5. Once the pilot is lit, switch the setting to “ON”

If these steps fail to get your furnace running properly, you should contact your local furnace repair service.

When to Call Your Local Service for Furnace Repair in Pittsburgh, PA

If there is no improvement after troubleshooting your furnace, call an expert to take a look

repairman fixing home furnace replacing cover
If you feel like troubleshooting is over your head or are worried about causing further problems, contact an expert.

There are some furnace issues that should only be fixed by professionals. If you can’t find a simple fix from our list of tips, there may be something more complicated or dangerous going on with your furnace that is only suitable for a professional to fix. If your furnace is making strange noises, you should call a professional furnace repair service to come help. Loud noises like booming or clicking could mean that your furnace is having problems with the motor or may be leaking gas. These are serious problems that should only be dealt with by a professional. Just to be safe, if you are unsure about whether or not it is safe to troubleshoot your furnace, call a furnace repair company.


If you are interested in learning even more about how to troubleshoot issues with your furnace or are in need of a professional, contact Home Mechanix for furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA.. Home Mechanix offers routine maintenance, same-day repair, and 24/7 emergency Pittsburgh furnace repair services to homeowners all over the city. So don’t wait, contact us today for a free quote.

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Which Home Furnace Maintenance Projects I Can DIY, and When Should I Call a Professional?

We break down some easy fixes and determine when it's time to call a local furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA

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