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How to Deal with a No Heat Emergency


If you’ve ever run into the problem of your furnace not heating properly or at all then you know how stressful it can be. Sometimes, the first thing that comes to mind is to call a professional; however, there are a few things that you can check prior to making that call. These are just easy, basic things that are often overlooked and are generally the cause for the furnace not heating.

First and foremost, you should make certain that your furnace air filter has not become clogged by excessive dust and debris. If your filter is not clogged or you have replaced it and the problem is still present, then here are some more potential causes and solutions.


  • Ensure that the furnace selector is set accurately to “heat.”
  • Ensure that the temperature on the thermostat is situated about three degrees – at minimum – over the present room temperature.
  • With an electric thermostat, ensure that the batteries are fully charged and that the thermostat display is indeed showing.
  • If your furnace is forced air and there is no heat present, ensure that that the thermostat consists of a switch that controls the furnace’s fan. As you move this switch to “on,” listen for the fan to come on. If the fan cannot be heard, check the supply register in order to determine whether the air is actually generated at all. If the fan is not efficiently running, your furnace may not have adequate power.

Electric Furnace: No Heat Present
There may be an emergency shut-off switch present on an electric heating furnace. If you can locate this switch, ensure that it is on. As a general rule, this switch resembles a standard light switch and is usually located near the side or on the side of the heating furnace. This switch could have very easily been accidentally switched off, which is why this should be checked first before anything else.

Some heating systems are equipped with automatically activated emergency cut-off switches that are set in motion when a door or service panel is removed. The last time you cleaned your filter, you could have not replaced the furnace door properly and firmly, which could be the reason why your furnace is not powering on and there is no heat coming out. Therefore, it is vital that you check all doors to ensure they are properly and firmly secured.

You also want to ensure that there are no breakers that have tripped or any fuses that have blown. If there is a blown fuse, you will want to make absolutely certain that you replace the blown fuse with a fuse of the exact same size. Should the breaker continue to trip or the fuses continue to blow out, a professional electrician should be called so that it can be determined why this dilemma continues to occur.

Oil/gas Furnaces; No Heat Present
If your furnace seems to be in proper working order although heat is not being generated – here are a few things you can do:

  • Ensure that your furnace is equipped with fuel. Yes, this should be common sense; however, you wouldn’t believe the number of service calls that we have answered only to determine that there was no fuel present in the furnace. Check the furnace’s fuel level and if there is a sufficient amount of fuel present then try to hit the red reset button that is located on the burner. Some heating systems may need to be turned off and then turned back on in order to be properly reset.
  • If your heating system is oil-fueled then the pump may need to be primed. Call Feehan Plumbing to have a qualified technician come out and execute this procedure.
  • If your heating system is gas then you want to ensure the pilot light is indeed lit. If the pilot light is not lit then you will want to follow the instructions in your owner’s manual to light it. If the pilot light will not stay lit, give a technician at Feehan Plumbing a call.

While the above-mentioned problems are the most common and basic, there could be additional problems present as well including but not limited to a tense blower motor, a loose fan belt, a bound gas inducer motor, or a broken gas igniter – all of which will entail the need of a professional technician. If you have questions, please call Feehan Plumbing & Heating at (610) 795-9327.

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