Noisy Gas Furnace? It Could be a Faulty Inducer Motor

Gas Furnace Repair Minneapolis & St. Paul

Gas-powered furnaces have a variety of components, but the inducer/blower assembly has the potential to be one of the noisiest when something goes wrong with a furnace. The good news is that the excessive noise provides a clear alert to the homeowner that their furnace requires attention.

What Does an Inducer Assembly Do?

The inducer motor/blower assembly performs a variety of essential functions as part of a gas-powered furnace. The assembly begins to operate during the initial start up phase of the furnace, as part of a system of checks and balances that ensures a gas furnace is ready for operation. During the start up phase, the inducer motor begins to run thus clearing the heat exchanger of any gas left over from the previous run cycle. The inducer blower also controls the quantity of air that moves through the heat exchanger. Ensuring a sufficient amount of air flow allows for clean and safe combustion of gas.

Troubleshooting Tips

It’s not uncommon as a gas furnace ages that problems begin to develop within the inducer motor. Since this motor begins to operate during the start up phase of furnace operation, one of the tell-tale signs of a failing inducer motor is a notable increase in noise shortly after the thermostat alerts the furnace to begin a heating cycle. Some homeowners report a loud humming or whirring noise as their furnace begins to operate, whereas others report a tapping noise.

Repairing an Inducer Motor

Most inducer motors failures are simply attributed to the older age of the furnace. In most cases, the internal bearings wear out and since the unit is a sealed unit, there is no way to repair the original motor. Instead the unit is simply replaced with a new one. Most units are fairly reasonably priced, although in rare cases some unit replacements come with a higher price tag.

Although it is possible for this assembly to continue to run (albeit noisily) for years, it is important to address a faulty inducer assembly because eventually if the inducer assembly fails to perform its task, the furnace will not pass its start up checks and the furnace will not operate. The average homeowner will not be able to determine exactly when their noisy motor will pass over from a nuisance, to a motor that fails to run. Many people find the excessive background noise annoying enough that they consider it a welcome repair. Once replaced, homeowners can once again enjoy the relative peace and quiet that a properly functioning furnace normally delivers.

Preserving the Assembly

To avoid issues with the inducer assembly as long as possible, there are a few things a homeowner can do to preserve their unit. Always make sure to follow the furnace manufacturer’s instructions for regularly changing the HVAC air filter. Regularly changing the air filter means furnace components don’t have to work as hard to perform their functions, thus resulting in less heat generated by the various components. A motor that doesn’t have to work extra hard because of a hot working environment, lasts longer. In addition, avoid blocking an excessive amount of heat registers within the home. If the heat generated by the furnace is not allowed to pass normally through the duct work, it stays behind and causes stress on furnace components.

Contact Metro Heating & Cooling Today

The inducer motor/blowers is an essential component of a gas-powered furnace. It is vitally important for it to function properly in order for a furnace to do its job of heating a home. Diagnosing issues and replacement of this assembly is best left to the professionals. If you are hearing excessive noise upon start up of your furnace, please contact us!

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