This time of the year, it is not uncommon for homeowners to notice problems with their heating systems. This is the busy season for most HVAC technicians living in the northern half of the country. As the cold temperatures take over, HVAC systems must work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature within the home. Thus, it makes sense that this would be the time when problems would be recognized.
One common problem faced by homeowners is a short cycling furnace. This, of course, can lead to a drastically reduced lifespan for the furnace, but is also very hard on the homeowner’s wallet. Short cycling means more energy consumption and that means higher heating bills. It could be this jump in monthly expenditure or the regular need for new igniters that causes the homeowner to reach out to a local HVAC technician.
There are a few different reasons why furnaces may short cycle:
- Faulty- or Poorly Functioning Thermostat Anticipator If this component is not working properly, or has not been set high enough, the result can be short cycling. Often this is a quick fix, but one that can save the homeowner a large sum of money.
- Faulty Pressure Sensor If the gas pressure is too high entering the furnace, it can result in overheating and short cycling.
- Blower Motor Issues There are a couple of blower motor issues that could account for the short cycling:
- Poorly Set Blower Speed If the speed set point is too low, the system will likely work harder than necessary to maintain the space.
- Faulty Capacitor If this element is bad, the blower will not have the appropriate power, which, again, means that the system must work harder. That leads to short cycling.
- Inappropriate Sizing When the ductwork is not properly sized for the space, it can definitely cause trouble for the homeowner. It will likely make it difficult to maintain a comfortable temperature in the space, but will also push energy expense upward. Similarly, if the furnace is too big for the home, it will reach set points faster, turning off and on more often.