Furnace Noises & What They Might Mean

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Furnace Noises & What They Might Mean

“Snap, crackle, pop”

If you are of a certain age, you know those three words are part of a great advertising campaign for a famous cereal; but they can also describe mysterious noises coming from your furnace. They might even prompt this exchange, “Honey, there’s a strange noise downstairs. Quick get out of bed and check it out.”

Your friends at Merts Heating & Air Conditioning don’t want to alarm you, but sometimes those  scary furnace sounds can mean there is a real problem. Here are the top three furnace sounds you should never ignore:


  • Scraping noises:


      • If this is the sound of metal-on-metal contact, you likely have a problem with your blower wheel. The result is a furnace that won’t be able to heat your home properly. A blower wheel problem requires attention by a trained HVAC technician.


  • Loud pops or bangs:


      • A common cause is a dirty furnace burner. When dirt collects on the burner, it can cause a delayed ignition which leads to gas buildup. When the burner finally ignites, you hear a loud pop or bang.
      • The small explosions can damage your furnace or cause a cracked heat exchanger. If you hear this sort of sound, you should contact Merts immediately.
      • Expanding or contracting metal air ducts can also cause these sounds. The sounds may indicate you need to have your ducts repaired.


  • Squealing noises:


    • A high-pitched squealing noise is not only annoying, but generally indicates there is a part that needs to be replaced. The culprit can be a worn out blower belt or a blower motor. These are generally easy fixes, but waiting too long can cause other damage to your furnace.

There are certainly many other sounds a furnace can make. If you’re hearing something strange, the best thing you can do is talk with our technicians about what those furnace noises might mean. In many cases it may be something very minor and easily corrected, but the worst thing you can do is ignore furnace noises for a long time. Call Merts, your home heating and cooling system experts, so our HVAC detectives can identify your furnace mystery sounds. For more great information like this, like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.