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Is Your Furnace Short Cycling?

furnace short cycling

As the temperatures drop and cozy sweaters are dug out of the closet, many homeowners in Ontario are switching their furnaces back on. However, after a long summer break, your furnace may not be ready to effectively tackle heating your home. If you’ve conducted your fall maintenance routine and your furnace is still struggling it may be “short cycling.”

What is “short cycling“? Short cycling occurs when your furnace frequently starts and stops in a quick time frame. This situation is one of the most common furnace problems encountered during operation.  

Here are some of the reasons your furnace may be short cycling:

Inappropriate Sizing

Furnaces that are too big for their required heating space – often short cycle. When a furnace is too large it will use too much energy, therefore causing low efficiency and frequent short cycling. Short cycling is problematic because it will cause your furnace to work harder and wear out faster. Unfortunately, if your furnace is short-cycling due to inappropriate sizing, the only way to solve this is to install a furnace that is more appropriately fitted for your home.

Qualified HVAC technicians are able to properly match the furnace operating size to your home’s square footage. This way you receive effective and efficient heating throughout your home without stoppage.

Risk of Overheating

Another reason that your furnace may be demonstrating short cycling is it’s overheating. If your furnace overheats, it may shut down prematurely in order to avoid damage. Damages from overheating may include cracking on the furnace which is harmful to both the furnace and those living in the house. Cracks can cause dangerous gases such as carbon monoxide that can escape into your home’s air ducts.

Restricted airflow is one of the main culprits of overheating. Airflow can be restricted by dirty filters, blocked vents or exhausts so it’s important to observe these areas often and clean frequently.

Thermostat Control

The information you program into your thermostat is important, as these are the instructions you’re sending to your furnace. If your thermostat is not working properly, your furnace is no longer receiving information about how it should operate, so it begins to make its own determinations. At this time, it may decide to run all of the time or may refuse to start at all – neither of which are good scenarios as both can lead to short cycling.

If your thermostat is incorrectly installed, or installed near a stove or a large window it may be cheated into thinking that the house is warmer than it actually is, and therefore adjusts the information it’s sending to the furnace prematurely.

Short Cycling Repair

If your furnace is short cycling contact a qualified professional for an inspection. At Aire One, we perform furnace repair and installation for all your heating needs. Contact us today to find the nearest Aire One location near you!  

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