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A Guide to What Furnace Noises Could Mean


Strange noises usually accompany failures in a mechanical system. Often, they are our first warning that something has gone amiss that needs attention. Furnaces are no different in this way: when you hear an odd noise coming from your furnace cabinet or the vents, it often means you should call for repairs right away, before you lose your heat or the furnace develops safety issues.

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For expert work on your furnace in Pearl River, NY, contact Design Air Inc and our trained staff of heating repair technicians. If you aren’t sure what that strange noise from your furnace means, we’ll send over one of our specialists to find out what’s wrong and how we can repair it.

Some common furnace warning noises:

  • Rattling: The simplest reason for this noise is loose bolts on the furnace cabinet, which you can screw down yourself. But it could come from a cracked blower fan belt or one that has started to come loose, which will need repairs before the belt breaks, stopping the fan and possibly damaging other components in the furnace. If the fan belt does come lose, you’ll hear a loud clanking, striking noise. Shut the furnace off and call for repairs.
  • Screeching: This probably means the bearings on one of the motors are failing, which can occur because of dirt or age. The failing motor will need a repair technician to replace it.
  • Rumbling, booming: If you hear these sounds from deep inside the cabinet, it probably indicates that the burners are having trouble igniting. It could be because of grime across the burner, or rust flakes inside it. The burner will need cleaning, which requires the work of a professional first to detach the burner.
  • Clicking: This could indicate fraying along the blower motor fan belt. However, if you hear this noise occurring right before the blower motor comes on, it could warn that the heat exchanger has a crack in it. This can be serious, because a cracked heat exchanger often leads to carbon monoxide leaking. Shut off the gas power to the furnace and call for repairs right away.

Don’t try to diagnose the problem yourself

We supplied the above list to help you understand when your furnace is encountering trouble so you can call for assistance from a trained professional. You should not open your furnace cabinet and try to figure out what ails the system on your own. You need a professional to make the proper diagnosis and apply the correct remedy.

Design Air Inc has our Pearl River, NY furnace specialists ready 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help when you think you need repairs. We won’t leave you with your furnace until you’re 100% satisfied.