Furnace Repair in Columbia, Mississippi: How to Fix 9 Common Issues

HVAC man working on a furnace

When your furnace won’t work, doing your own furnace repair in Columbia, Mississippi, can feel like a big undertaking.

There are a couple of time-saving, inexpensive solutions you can take on by yourself to avoid a heater repair call.

If your heating system won’t kick on, won’t keep running or won’t ignite, try the troubleshooting checklist below before getting in touch with an HVAC professional.

If you come to the realization you need support from a heating and cooling expert and live in Columbia, Watts Electric & A/C Inc is able to help you. We can repair most makes of heaters.

CALL NOW 601-736-7362



If you’re ready for a new heater, we also provide furnace installation.

While you’re in touch with our team, think over a routine furnace maintenance plan from Watts Electric & A/C Inc that may help you avoid repairs down the line. A team member can tell you how frequently your furnace should be inspected by one of our NATE-Certified professionals.

Use our straightforward checklist as demonstrated to get started on troubleshooting your HVAC system. Most of these steps don’t have the requirement of mechanical know-how.

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1. Inspect the Thermostat

To start, ensure your thermostat is telling your heater to ignite.

Digital Thermostat

  • Replace the batteries if the monitor is empty. If the digital display is jumbled, the thermostat may need to be changed.
  • Make sure the button is set to “heat” as opposed to “off” or “cool.”
  • Ensure the program is showing the correct day and time and is programmed to “run.” If you’re having a hard time overriding the setting, set the temperature with the up/down arrows and holding the “hold” button. This will force the furnace to start if thermostat settings are a problem.
  • Turn the temperature setting to 5 degrees hotter than what the room temperature currently is.

If your furnace hasn’t started within a couple minutes, ensure it has electricity by toggling the fan switch from “auto” to “on.” If the fan doesn’t operate, your furnace may not have power.

Smart Thermostat

If you utilize a smart thermostat—for example one manufactured by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch—troubleshooting will depend on your model. Take a look at the manufacturer’s website for assistance. If you’re still unable to get your Wi-Fi thermostat to function, calll us at 601-736-7362 for heating and cooling service.

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2. Check Breakers and Switches

Next, you should verify your breaker and furnace switch are on.

  • Locate your home’s main electrical panel. If you have no idea where it is, look for a silver metal box in your basement, garage or closet.
  • Ensure your hands and feet aren’t moist before using the panel or breakers.
  • Look for the breaker marked “furnace” or “heat,” and make sure it’s turned “on.” If the breaker has tripped, it will be in the middle or “off” area.
  • With one hand, quickly turn the breaker to the “on” location. If the breaker instantly trips and pops back to “off,” don’t try to reset it and get in touch with a professional from Watts Electric & A/C Inc at 601-736-7362 right away.

Regardless of your furnace’s age or brand, it has no less than one regular wall switch installed on or by it.

  • Make certain the lever is facing up in the “on” placement. If it was turned off, it could take your furnace up to five minutes to start. (If you’re unsure where to find your furnace, take a look at your basement, garage or utility closet. It can also be in a crawl space or attic.)
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3. Put in a New Air Filter

When we consider heating issues, a filthy, blocked air filter is frequently the top offender.

If your filter is too grungy:

  • Your heating system won’t be able to stay on, or it might get too warm from limited airflow.
  • Your energy bills might be higher because your heat is running more than it should.
  • Your heat may stop working sooner than it should because a filthy filter forces it to work overtime.
  • Your heater can lose power if an excessively dirty filter results in a tripped breaker.

Based on what model of heater you own, your air filter will be inside the blower compartment of your heating system, an attached filter case or wall-mounted return air grille.

To replace your filter:

  • Switch off your heating system.
  • Pull out the filter and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, replace it.
  • Insert the new filter with the arrow facing toward the heating system to prevent damage.

Flat filters need to be replaced monthly, while pleated filters should work somewhere in the vicinity of three months. You may also use a washable filter that will last about 10 years. If you have children or pets, you could have to replace your filter sooner.

To make the procedure easier in the future, use a permanent pen on your heating system housing or ductwork to indicate the airflow direction and filter size.

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4. Look at the Condensate Pan

Also known as drain pans, condensate pans capture moisture your heating system draws from the air.

If liquid is seeping from within your heater or its pan has too much water in it, follow these recommendations.

  • If your pan includes a drain (look for a PVC pipe), make sure that it isn’t full. If it requires draining, get a special pan-cleaning tablet you can buy at home improvement or hardware retailers.
  • If your pan has a pump, inspect the float switch. If the switch can’t be moved from the “up” position with liquid in the pan, contact us at 601-736-7362, because you will possibly have to get a new pump.
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5. Check for Furnace Error Codes

If malfunctions persist, peek at your heating system’s plastic window to verify the blower motor’s status. Dependent on the brand, the light might also be attached on the surface of your heating system.

If you notice anything other than a steady, colored light or flickering green light, contact us at 601-736-7362 for HVAC service. Your furnace may be giving an error code that is calling for specialized service.

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6. Clean the Flame Sensor

If your furnace attempts to work but shuts off without distributing warmth, a filthy flame sensor might be at fault. When this occurs, your heater will try to ignite three times before a safety device powers it down for approximately an hour.

If you feel comfortable with taking the panels off your heating system, cleaning your flame sensor is a task you are able to do personally. Or, one of our heating service experts has the ability to finish it for you.

If you want to clean the sensor on your own, you require:

  • A 1/4” hex screwdriver or wrench
  • Bit of light grit sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth
  • An unused paper towel

As the next step:

  • Turn off the heating system’s power through its wall switch or breaker. If your gas valve isn’t electric, you will need to shut off the gas as well.
  • Remove the furnace’s front panel and trace the wire to the flame sensor.
  • Remove the rod and use your sandpaper, steel wool or emery cloth to lightly rub the metal rod.
  • Wipe off the rod with a paper towel.
  • Remount the sensor.
  • Replace the furnace doors.
  • Turn the furnace’s power back on. It might go through a series of inspections before continuing regular heating. If your heating system doesn’t ignite, the sensor could have to be replaced or something else may be causing a problem. If this takes place, get in touch with us at 601-736-7362 for heating and cooling repair assistance.
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7. Relight the Pilot Light

If you have an outdated furnace, the pilot light could be turned off. To light it, locate the instructions on a sticker on your furnace, or use these guidelines.

  • Find the toggle on the bottom of your heating system labeled “pilot,” “on” and “off.”
  • Push the switch to the “off” position.
  • Don’t do anything for at least five minutes to prevent sparking a fire.
  • Move the switch to “pilot.”
  • Press the “reset” lever as you push the flame of a long lighter to the pilot light opening.
  • Let go of the “reset” button once the pilot light is ignited.
  • If you have gone through the instructions twice and the pilot light still won’t ignite or stay ignited, get in touch with us at 601-736-7362 for furnace service.

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Examine Your Gas Delivery System

Try turning on another gas appliance. If it doesn’t work, your natural gas source could be switched off, or you might have run out of propane.

We Can Provide HVAC Repair

Used our troubleshooting sheet but your heater still refuses to heat?

Reach us now at 601-736-7362 or contact us online. We’ll visit your house and diagnose the trouble.

CALL FOR SERVICE NOW 601-736-7362

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