How Do I Know If My Oil Furnace Ignitor Is Bad

As the winter season sets in, you would want your house to be as cozy and comfortable as possible. Unfortunately, even with preventive maintenance, your furnace can give up. Sometimes, the fix is easy while in other cases it might be a faulty ignitor or you may have to call in oil burner repair services. So, let’s discuss what is a furnace ignitor and how you can troubleshoot problems related to it. Let’s begin!

What Is An Oil Furnace Ignitor?

Back in the day, furnaces used to have a pilot light that helped heat up the air blowing into your home. With the arrival of the winter season every year, you might have noticed your family members bravely trying to light up the furnace.

Today, that pilot light is replaced by the ignitor. Without the ignitor, your heater will not be able to blow hot air. It happens to be one of the most crucial elements of a furnace system and also one of the most common reasons not allowing the furnace to function properly.

The function of the ignitor is to spark the gas or oil connected to your furnace. This creates a clicking noise. On the other hand, some types of furnace ignitors do not use a spark and heat up as they touch the gas surface to heat the air blowing from the surface.

Oil Furnace Ignitor Problems

No Cold Air

If your oil furnace ignitor is faulty, you will observe that the heater will not blow hot air. This is because the ignitor is not able to create a spark to ignite the gas or oil. Therefore, you will feel cold air because the heater is blowing air with the temperature as the outside air.

If you notice cold air coming out of the furnace, it having some problem. However, you should check other causes as well such as the thermostat settings. Make sure that the thermostat is set to “heat” and the temperature is hot enough for the furnace to blow hot air.

Constantly Starts And Stops

If you notice that your furnace is going out and coming back on continuously, it means that the ignitor is not able to hold the charge long enough to heat the furnace air. Plus, your furnace might also have a safety feature that makes it wait at least 60 seconds before allowing it to start again.

Your furnace repeatedly turning off and on is not healthy for the system. To prevent any damage, you should fix the problem as soon as you notice it.

The Furnace Won’t Turn On

If your house is getting but the furnace doesn’t begin its heat cycle, you should consider that its ignitor is faulty. Then again, you should first check the thermostat settings. Next, you should check the breaker box and see if the furnace switch is tripped to “Off”. If the switch is “ON”, you might have been facing an issue with the ignitor or any other electrical issue.

The Furnace Suddenly Stops Blowing

Most furnaces feature a safety mechanism that stops the furnace from working in case there is a problem. So, if you notice that your furnace stops blowing hot air all of a sudden, there might be a problem with the system. This also indicates an issue with the ignitor of your oil burner.

However, before you blame the ignitor, you should check the air filter. Surprisingly, clogged air filters tend to play a huge role in making furnaces stop suddenly. The furnace will not be able to blow hot air properly if the filter is clogged. If the air filter is clogged, you should clean or replace it and then try using the furnace.

In addition to that, the air ducts should be inspected too. If anything is blocking the airflow, the furnace will automatically shut down to prevent damage. However, in this case, you will be needing a professional to diagnose the problem.

Final Word

Fixing a faulty furnace ignitor is easy if you were to look out for the signs mentioned above. In most cases, it is an inexpensive fix as well that does not take too much time and effort. However, make sure that you always choose a expert furnace services ronkonkoma for the purpose.


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