Having a smart thermostat isn’t just smart for spending less on heating costs. It can also let you know if there’s a problem with your furnace.
The Google Nest has a feature called Furnace Heads Up, which will let you know if it senses an issue with your heating system. You’ll see the alert on the thermostat, in the app and in your monthly Nest Home report.
One of the most common problems is: “Nest noticed that your furnace shuts down within 15 minutes of heating.” Here’s what's doing on and how you can correct it.
Your Furnace is Short Cycling
When you get the message “Nest noticed that your furnace shuts down within 15 minutes of heating,” that means your furnace is short cycling. Short cycling is when the furnace turns on for a brief period of time then switches off. This HVAC game of red light, green light prevents your home from being warm and can increase your energy bill. It can also increase deterioration on your furnace. It may also be more likely to break down and may even require replacement more quickly.
Without Furnace Heads Up, you might not detect your furnace is turning on and off frequently, because its blower fan might keep running. This feature can pick up on power interruptions that take place during short cycling.
How Do I Keep My Furnace from Short Cycling?
There are a few easy ways you can prevent your furnace from short cycling.
Change Your Air Filter Regularly
If your air filter is too dirty, it will restrict airflow. Your furnace will then shut off prematurely to avoid overheating. We recommend changing flat filters once a month, and pleated filters every three months. It’s simple to stay on top of replacing your filter by setting up a Filter Reminder on your thermostat.
If you’ve changed your filter after receiving a Furnace Heads Up alert, you can run a test to see if that repairs the problem.
- Press the ring to pull up the Quick View menu, where you’ll choose "settings" and then "equipment."
- The thermostat will display the wires connected to it. Select "continue."
- You’ll see system components displayed. Hit "test."
- Choose "Furnace Heads Up" and follow the instructions. Your furnace will go through a 15-minute heating test and tell you the results when it’s done.
Google says if the filter is clean or if your furnace didn’t clear the test, something else could be awry that needs professional assistance. If this happens, contact Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning at 321-428-7635 for furnace repair.
Clean or Replace Your Furnace’s Flame Sensor
Having a dirty or malfunctioning flame sensor is another top explanation why your furnace might short cycle. You can determine if there’s a problem by watching your furnace as it turns on. Here’s what to check for.
- Take off the door from your furnace so you can look at the burners. If you have a viewport in the furnace door, you may not have to remove the door for this.
- Switch on the furnace by setting the thermostat to a higher indoor temperature.
- When you switch on the heat, the fan will begin running first. You should notice it turn on.
- The ignitor will start to glow. The ignitor is either on the left or right of the burners, but it varies according to the furnace model.
- Once the ignitor is warm enough, the gas will switch on and the burners will ignite.
- If the flame sensor can’t detect a flame, it’s usually due to the fact it’s dirty or defective. Your furnace will then shut off as a safety precaution. If your furnace is short cycling, you'll observe the flame and fan shutting off after a couple of seconds.
If you’re wondering how flame sensors could get dirty being bathed in fire constantly, a combination of moisture and chemicals in the air form a thin coating of carbon on the surface. Cleaning a dirty flame sensor will stop the short cycling issue. This task is best left to an Expert. That's due to the fact an HVAC professional like Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning will be able to clean it without damaging it or be able to tell you if you need a new one.
Check Your Furnace’s Exhaust Pipe Often
Your high-efficiency furnace vents combustion gases outside through a PVC pipe. This pipe can get blocked by snow or bird nests, so you’ll want to make sure it’s always clear. If the pipe gets plugged, it can result in your furnace overheating. It could also cause carbon monoxide to flow back into your home, creating a potentially fatal situation.
However, modern furnaces have a pressure switch that typically will prevent these situations from happening. Households with young children will often find their kids have stuffed toy cars, sticks or nuts into the exhaust if it’s in an area that's accessible by tiny hands. Even this little amount is enough to trigger the pressure switch. The irregular flow of air into and out of the system triggers the pressure switch, which shuts down the burners. If this is the root of your problem, you will experience short cycling and a furnace error code specifying the pressure switch was triggered.
An Expert HVAC technician from Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning can check the codes for you and diagnose the problem. Unfortunately, Nest has not developed to the point where it can read the error codes furnace manufacturers produce, so you will still require a pro to help you out.
Let the Experts Solve Your Short Cycling Furnace
If you get the message, “Nest noticed that your furnace shuts down within 15 minutes of heating,” you know what to do. At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, our Experts have the expertise to resolve any furnace problem quickly and affordably. What’s even better is that we back our repairs with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee for one year.* To request your appointment, contact us at 321-428-7635 or schedule online.
*Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage Program Agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions.