The Clunk and the Funk – Explaining Strange Sounds & Smells Coming from Your Furnace
Click, click, click. Nobody is tapping their fingernails on the table. Nobody is typing on a typewriter. This clicking is coming from your furnace! If you hear this sound in your furnace, it means something is wrong. Probably, a constant clicking sound is your igniter trying unsuccessfully to light the burners. Without the burners lit, your furnace won’t heat the air in your house. Time to call the furnace repairman!
Here are some other strange noises and smells that should not be coming from your furnace (but sometimes they happen, and that means your furnace needs some professional attention).
Screeches or Scraping Sounds from Your Furnace
You might think a bird or small, scurrying animal has been trapped inside your furnace. What you hear is probably a broken part hitting the furnace casing. The blower wheel may be broken, or something went awry with the motor. Broken parts in a furnace need replacing immediately.
Furnace Making Booming Sounds
Explosions inside your furnace should not be ignored! An explosion probably means the burners inside the furnace are dirty, making it hard for them to light. Extra gas builds up and then explodes when it does get lit. Even if the blast is small and doesn’t seem to be breaking anything, eventually it could cause damage that would be more expensive than getting your burners cleaned.
Thwapping Sounds Mean Furnace Trouble
Thwapping means something is stuck, and the blower blades are hitting it with each turn. This is not the worst problem that could happen to a furnace, but it can cause your furnace’s motor to wear out.
Rotten Eggs Can Mean a Gas Leak!
When it comes to your furnace, that horrible smell usually means there’s a gas leak. The gas your furnace uses is deadly, but is invisible and has no natural odor. That’s why the gas company adds a sulfur smell to alert people to a gas leak. If you smell rotten eggs or sulfur, turn off the furnace and open the windows, then leave the house! Call your gas service company to repair the leak.
Smells Like Something Is Burning!
This smell coming from your furnace might need some time to decide if it’s a bad problem or not. If you just turned on your furnace for the first time in the season, then it probably will burn up the dust that has accumulated over the summer. If the smell does not go away, you could consider getting a new air filter. This should clear it up, but if doesn’t clear up the smell, then call the repairman.