Estimated Repair Costs for 4 Common Furnace Problems

November 30, 2021

Your furnace is a key part of your home. Without one, you wouldn’t be able to keep warm during the winter. Yet furnaces can have some problems that are more common than others.

Let’s go over these issues and about what they might cost to correct so you know before you contact an HVAC technician. Some of the most common furnace repair problems involve:

  • Furnace won’t turn on
  • Furnace doesn’t stay lit
  • Furnace won’t blow hot air
  • Furnace won’t turn off

1. Furnace Won’t Turn On

There are a couple of reasons why your furnace won’t turn on, so make sure to check all of them.

  • Is your thermostat set right? Make sure it’s on “heat,” “auto” and that your preferred temperature is higher than the room’s current temperature. If you use a programmable thermostat, make sure it has fresh batteries.
  • Is the circuit breaker tripped? Your furnace can’t run if it doesn’t have electricity. Reset the switch if it’s facing the outside of the electrical panel.
  • Is the furnace switch off? Your furnace has a power switch found on or close to it. Because this switch resembles a light switch, it’s easy to accidentally turn it off. If it was off, it might take your furnace a few minutes to turn on.
  • Is the air filter clean? A dusty air filter can cause a lot of problems for your furnace. Get a new one if you can’t see light through it.

Estimated Repair Cost

This issue can be complex, so the estimated cost to repair it varies according to what’s wrong.

2. Furnace Won’t Stay Lit

Your furnace follows a certain sequence when it starts heating your home.

  1. Your thermostat notices the temperature has fallen and tells your furnace to start running.
  2. The draft inducer fan activates to bring in fresh air for combustion.
  3. The gas valve unlocks for the burners, which are lit electronically.
  4. The flame sensor signals to your furnace the burners have been ignited.

If something is off during the sequence, your furnace will shut down as a preventive measure.

A couple of possible causes for this issue include:

  • Dirty or malfunctioning flame sensor. If the sensor doesn’t detect a flame, it will shut off your furnace to keep natural gas from spilling into your home. The ignition process corrodes flame sensors over time. While cleaning during annual furnace maintenance can help, yours may ultimately need to be taken out and changed.
  • Bad limit switch. This safety feature will turn off your furnace if it senses backdrafting. Backdrafting is dangerous, because carbon monoxide and natural gas can seep into your home. These switches can fail due to age, damage or dust accumulation.
  • Old thermostat. If your thermostat isn’t working correctly, your furnace won’t be able to operate.
  • Dirty air filter. A dirty air filter can limit airflow and force your furnace to shut off to prevent overheating. Make sure to change yours every 30 to 90 days, or whenever you can’t see light through it.

Estimated Repair Cost

These costs are estimates, so it’s important to note yours may fluctuate based on your furnace’s brand and model.

  • Flame sensor: $350–$500
  • Limit switch: $150–$300
  • Thermostat: $150–$350
  • Furnace filter: $10-$30

3. Furnace Won’t Blow Hot Air

In many instances, this problem is tied to a wrong thermostat setting or a dirty air filter that’s limiting airflow. Follow the steps above to fix the problem.

4. Furnace Won’t Turn Off

If it’s very chilly outside or you like your home to be toasty, your furnace may be working for a long time.

If this isn’t what's happening, ensure your thermostat is set correctly and running properly. If your fan setting is at “on,” the blower motor will be running even when the furnace isn’t, so it’ll sound like your furnace is on all the time.

Alternatively, there might be a problem with the blower motor or your ductwork may be leaking air, making your furnace run constantly to make up for the lost air.

Estimated Repair Cost

These costs are approximations, so it’s necessary to note yours may be different based on your furnace’s brand and model.

  • New blower motor: $250–$800
  • Seal ductwork: varies based on square footage

Marcos AC & Heating Can Solve Your Furnace Issues Quickly and Affordably

Furnace issues can be a costly headache, but not when you work with Marcos AC & Heating. We’ve been delivering the quality, affordable furnace repair Houston homeowners have relied on since 1987. Contact us at 713-469-3357 to request your free estimate today.