Furnace Producing Low Air Pressure: Troubleshooting This Common Problem

Posted on: 12 March 2015

Is your furnace barely producing enough hot air to keep your home from qualifying as absolutely freezing? If so, you should know that this rather common problem is not always indicative of a serious system malfunction. In fact, this problem is often easily fixed by performing just a few basic troubleshooting steps. Best of all, most homeowners will find that they are able to complete these steps on their own without the need to cover the cost of hiring a professional contractor. Below you will learn more about the steps you can take to try and resolve this problem in your own house.

Step 1: Check The Vents

When troubleshooting this particular heating problem, the first thing you will want to do is to check all of the air return vents in your home. When checking each vent, first make sure that the vent is fully open and free of any visible debris. Next, make a note of whether or not each vent is producing an increased, decreased, or average amount of air pressure. This will allow you to determine whether or not you are dealing with an isolated problem or if the problem is system wide.

If all of your vents seem to be producing a very low flow of hot air, simply move on to the next step in the troubleshooting process. However, if only a few of your vents seem to be affected, you can skip step 2 and move directly to step 3.

Step 2: Check Your Air Filter

One of the most common reasons for a reduction in the amount of hot air a furnace is producing is that the furnace is only able to pull in a limited amount of air. In most cases, this reduction in air flow will be the result of a dirty air filter. As this furnace continues to become clogged with dust, dirt, and other debris, the amount of air that is allowed to flow through the filter will continue to decrease. Since your furnace is only capable of blowing out as much air as it can take it, this will inevitably lead to a reduction in the hot air that is pushed through your air vents.

In order to determine whether or not you air filter is to blame for you current circulation problems, simply remove the old filter from behind your main intake vent. Clean or replace this filter and wait a few minutes to see if the air flow from your vents begins to increase.

Step 3: Check Your Duct Connections

If you are experiencing a problem with the air flow in just a few of your vents, there is a good chance that either one of your ducks is leaking or has become detached.

In order to find the duct that is to blame for your current issues, begin by visually checking each of the ducts stemming from your main furnace unit. Be sure that each of these ducts is attached tightly and does not have any visible signs of damage. If you fail to find the culprit, continue your search with the ducts in your attic or crawlspace.

If you are unable to find the damaged duct in either location, chances are the air leak is hidden within your walls. Unfortunately, this is a problem that you cannot address on your own. Consequently, the time has come for you to contact a qualified heating repair contractor in your local area.