Repair Simple Problems With Forced Air Electric Furnace

  • 2-4 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 30-100
What You'll Need
Replacement furnace filter
Clean cloth
Fan belt dressing
Replacement fan belt

Forced air electric furnaces are one of the most popular methods for heating a home in the United States. In many areas, gas, wood, and other potential fuel sources for furnaces are expensive or difficult to acquire.

Electricity can be used to heat air for distribution around the house at a much lower cost than gas. The forced air component of the furnace will distribute the air throughout your home. If it is beginning getting cold and you find that your forced air electric furnace isn't working properly, you may be able to remedy the issue by troubleshooting the furnace problem at home. Read on for a brief guide on how to repair a forced air electric furnace.

Step 1 - Check the Circuit

The most common reason for a furnace not running is a circuit overload. When this happens, the circuit breaker that controls electrical power flow is tripped in the central circuit breaker. Locate your circuit breaker and determine which breaker switch is linked to the furnace. Make sure that it has not been flipped off.

Step 2 - Check the Furnace Unit

Many types of electric furnaces have reset buttons that can help to restart the system if it is functioning improperly. If your furnace will not turn on and the problem is not a tripped circuit breaker switch, locate the reset button on your furnace and activate it. Your furnace may also have a built in breaker panel that can be switched off. It's a good idea to locate this panel to reactivate it as well.

Step 3 - Check the Comfort Controls

Some furnaces have programmed comfort control settings. These controls are designed to prevent the furnace from being tampered with by children or by accident. Look to the comfort controls if your furnace generates heat, but doesn't seem to produce enough of it.

Step 4 - Replace Both the Filter the Assembly

Open the main furnace panel by removing the screws that hold it in place with a screwdriver. Locate the furnace filter. Filters often become dirty and do not allow air to pass. Purchase a replacement filter for your model of furnace and remove the old one by hand. Fit the new filter into place.

While you have the furnace open, it may also be a good idea to clean the assembly. A clogged assembly can cause backups in the distribution of air through the furnace system. Clean the assembly with a clean cloth.

Step 5 - Fix Squeaky Belts

If the fan belts in your furnace are squeaking, first remedy the problem by spraying them down with fan belt dressing. If that doesn't solve the problem, you may need to remove the fan belt. It is likely that it is damaged. Replace it with another fan belt per the furnace owner's manual instructions.