Troubleshooting Your Home Heating System

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated August 2, 2013)

Troubleshooting your home heating system is something that anyone can do to, and should do, to prepare for the coming of winter. Instead of waiting till the middle of the first big snow storm, take some time to use these simple guidelines to see if your home heating system is up to snuff. Simply work on each of the bulleted items, and by the end of the list you will have covered the major reasons for a malfunctioning heating system

  • Test the thermostat. Does your thermostat work? The easiest way to check this is by simply changing the temperature. Reset the thermostat to a higher setting, and see if your heater kicks in. If it does, great. If it doesn't, then you need to do a little further checking. Be sure that you also check to see if it works in the other direction as well. What this means is that after the heater comes on, and you let it run, turn the thermostat back down. The heater should either immediately stop, or stop within the next couple of minutes.
  • Test your thermostat's thermometer. Every thermostat has a thermometer. The thermometer is what tells your thermostat what temperature your home is at. The easiest way to test if your thermostat's thermometer is working properly is through the use of an old fashioned thermometer and some tape. Tape your thermometer to the wall near your thermostat and wait. After a few minutes the thermometer should read the same temperature as your thermostat. If it doesn't then you need to have someone come and recalibrate it.
  • Check the power source. Make sure that your thermostat is receiving the proper amount of power. If you need to have it plugged in, be sure that this is done so. However, most modern thermostats use a battery. When preparing your home for the winter, be sure that you always replace the batteries. This will ensure that your thermostat has a fresh electrical source, and should last through the winter.
  • Check pilot lights. One of the major reasons for a home heating system to experience problems is through the pilot light being out. Simply taking the time to check and make sure that your pilot light is lit can ensure that you don't call a repairman out for any unnecessary (and expensive) work. On the average, you should check your pilot light once at the beginning of the season, and at least once a month till the end of the season.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

MORE FROM LEE

Building a Kids Bed

Have you ever noticed how a kids bed never really seems to be up to all the abuse those darn kids can put it through? ...

Discover More

What is a Blue Book Value?

If you are looking to purchase or sell a car, then chances are you have heard about blue book value. But what is a blue ...

Discover More

Installing Energy Efficient Doors

Installing energy efficient doors is a great way to help reduce your overall heating or cooling bills. While you could ...

Discover More

Cordless, Compact, and Powerful! DeWalt's 18-volt drill-driver kit packs a big punch in a small package, with a powerful high-performance motor tucked away inside a compact design. A great addition to the tool chest of any professional or DIYer! Check out DeWalt 18-Volt Drill/Driver Kit today!

More Home Improvement Tips

Heating Up a Cold Room

While it is tempting to do so, there are other ways of heating up a cold room besides turning up the thermostat. Try a ...

Discover More

Insulating an Attic

No matter the type of weather that you may be faced with, if you don't have the proper insulation in your attic you can ...

Discover More

Installing Radiant Floor Heating

Do your floors have a tendency to get cold? No one really enjoys waking up to a cold floor, and this can happen at any ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is nine minus 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)