Basics on Furnace Short-Cycling

At All Hours Plumbing, we’re here to keep you and your family warm and cozy for the entire winter. Our furnace repair, replacement and service offerings will keep your system working properly throughout the cold season.

One of the most common furnace issues many homeowners run into this time of year? Short-cycling, which is when the furnace starts and stops too quickly and far too often. This issue is actually more common with air conditioners but can happen to furnaces as well. Let’s look at some reasons why it happens, and what you can do about it.

Possible Reasons

There are a couple common reasons why furnace short-cycling takes place:

  • Size/power: In many cases, short-cycling happens to newer furnaces that are simply too large or powerful for the space they’re installed in. There is absolutely such thing as a furnace that’s too large or too strong – it can consume far too much energy just to maintain your basic thermostat settings. This could also mean air doesn’t get distributed properly, which is often the cause of the machine starting and stopping so often. This will drive up your utility costs and wear out your HVAC fan quicker than normal as well.
  • Overheating: In other cases, the furnace is shutting itself down to protect from overheating damage. An overheating furnace can lead to heat exchanger cracks, which can be extremely dangerous. It’s usually caused by restricted airflow, which traps hot air close to the exchanger – usually due to a dirty air filter, blocked vents or a blocked exhaust vent on the roof.

Thermostat Considerations

The furnace takes all its orders from the thermostat, and a malfunctioning thermostat can be another source of short-cycling in the furnace – or other issues, such as a furnace that won’t turn off at all. Even if the thermostat is fine, it can cause short-cycling if it’s installed near a major heat source like a stove or a sun-facing window – these can trick it into thinking the home is too hot, leading to short-cycling.

For more on dealing with short-cycling, or to learn about any other elements of our furnace service, speak to the pros at All Hours Plumbing today.

2018-08-23T16:20:37+00:00March 1st, 2018|Blog|