There’s really no way around it—breaker trips are annoying. Of course, they’re important, since they are protecting your home from damage and even possibly a fire, but that doesn’t make them any less inconvenient. And that’s doubly so when it’s your furnace doing the tripping. It’s cold outside tonight, and now you’re cold, too! Why is your breaker tripping when the furnace kicks on, and what can be done about it? Answers are coming right up, by way of the certified HVAC team at BVS Air Conditioning & Heating.
What Causes a Furnace to Trip a Breaker?
There are actually a few major causes here, each corresponding to a unique issue. And while this complicates things a wee bit, it also makes it easier for experts like ours to pinpoint the cause, thus allowing for a faster, easier furnace repair service. The two biggest causes here are an overloaded circuit and a short circuit. Not familiar with these? Let’s get a little specific:
An overloaded circuit is one that is exceeding the allotted safe amount of current in your circuit. Breakers are essentially limiters used for safety, and they are wired to specific circuits used throughout the home. Your HVAC system uses (or definitely should be using) a dedicated circuit, which means the breaker in question only deals with the HVAC system. If the furnace is flipping the breaker due to overload, then there’s an electrical problem with the furnace, or the breaker is the wrong size to suit the furnace system’s needs (or your furnace is the wrong size for your home). The most common cause of an overload of your furnace is actually poor air flow, most commonly associated with dirty air filters or a lack of routine HVAC maintenance.
A short circuit is, in essence, the result of something going wrong. Short circuits happen when a wire gets wet or when some electrical component touches something it shouldn’t or if the ground wire comes into contact with something it shouldn’t/becomes damaged. If your furnace is short-circuiting, then something has become loose or damaged and you’re going to need a qualified technician.
Any Other Possibilities?
Of course! The problem could also lie with the breaker box (electrical panel, distribution board, etc.) itself, and not with the furnace at all. If your panel is getting on in the years, or if your home has evolved but your electrical hasn’t (renovations and add-ons), then your panel might just be too weak to keep up with your needs. Or the breaker itself could be worn out, which certainly happens as well.
So the big question here is what do you do when this happens. Well, first off, do not keep flipping the breaker back on and just hope for the best. You can do this maybe once and only once, but if it happens again, your breaker is trying to protect you and you are making it very hard for it to do its job! Your best bet is to call in for immediate furnace repair. Don’t let the cold creep in on you, and absolutely don’t allow an electrical problem to just sit in your home. That’s how you get fires and injury, and no one wants those!
Reliable Heating Services in Katy & Houston, TX
For your home in the Katy area, only the best will do. When winter hits, you need a heating system that is reliable, effective, and doesn’t eat up energy. For superior heating services, no one does it better than BVS Air Conditioning & Heating. Our team has been providing top-quality services and products for three decades, and our service is totally focused on exceeding your expectations. When you contact BVS for heating services, you are immediately our top priority. We want nothing more than to bring you the best solution to meet your needs, and our job is never done until it has been done perfectly.
Ronald is one of the key contributors to BVS Home Experts, a family-owned and operated full-service air conditioning and heating company serving the Katy and West Houston areas. With a deep understanding of air conditioning and heating concerns, Ronald brings a wealth of knowledge to our readers.