5 Ways to Tell if Your Home’s Thermostat is Malfunctioning
If you have recently learned that your home’s heating and cooling system is on the fritz, you may be stressed out about the possibility of paying high HVAC system repair bills. While this is an understandable concern, you may be pleased to learn that many types of repair issues can be addressed without the help of a professional HVAC technician.
For example, one of the primary causes of HVAC repair issues relates to thermostat repair, and there are some steps that you can take to check and troubleshoot a programmable thermostat before you call a technician for assistance. By fixing a minor problem on your own, you may be able to save both time and money.
Review the Settings
As a first step to take to troubleshoot your programmable thermostat, check the settings on the thermostat. You may have noticed that the air in your home was growing uncomfortably warm or cold, and the reason may have been as simple as someone else fidgeting with the settings.
For example, they may have flipped the AC on when you wanted the heater on, or they may have turned the entire system off by mistake. Ensure that the thermostat is turned “On” and that the “Cool” or “Heat” settings are appropriate for your needs.
Toggle the Settings
You may even toggle these switches or buttons back and forth to turn the system off and then on again. This simple action may serve as a reset for the system. When you switch the setting to “Off,” count to ten before turning it back to the “On” position.
Rebooting the thermostat is a great way to jump-start the system, but it may not mean that the thermostat is in proper working order. If you find that you have to repeatedly reboot the thermostat to get it to work properly, it may be time to replace the thermostat control entirely.
Adjust the Temperature Setting
If these efforts have not worked to any avail, you may consider adjusting the temperature setting on the thermostat.
If it is summer and you want your air conditioner on, for example, lower the setting by a few degrees until you hear the system kick into gear. If it is winter and you want the heater on, you can increase the setting.
Keep in mind that if you adjust the settings as far as they will go and the system still does not kick on, you may need to have your HVAC unit professionally serviced, or you may need to replace your thermostat.
Replace the Batteries
Some programmable thermostat devices are battery-operated, and this means that you will need to replace the batteries from time to time. Some have a battery power indicator that you can review if the thermostat is still on.
If the batteries are completely dead, there may be no power at all to the thermostat settings. You can remove the thermostat cover and locate the battery compartment on the rear of the cover. Simply replace the batteries, and return the cover to the wall. This may be enough to make the system start functioning again.
However, bear in mind that it may take many minutes for your home’s temperature to be restored to normal. If replacing the batteries does not do the trick, you may need to replace the thermostat entirely. To avoid having to deal with this problem in the future, you may replace your batteries each time you change the air filter.
Toggle the Circuit Breaker
Another idea that may work well for some homeowners is toggling the circuit breaker.
Your circuit breaker may have become tripped, and this may have turned off the power supply to the thermostat or the HVAC system. When you flip the circuit breaker off and then on again, you may reset it.
This is generally the last step to take before you call an HVAC technician out to your home.
Replace the Thermostat
If you are like many people, these steps may have resolved the issue for you, or they have led you to believe that there may be something wrong with the thermostat itself.
Generally, a thermostat repair is not feasible, and a replacement is a better solution. You can request assistance from a technician to diagnose the problem with your home’s HVAC unit or thermostat, and he may tell you that you need to replace the thermostat.
When replacing the thermostat, focus on features and price, but also look for a unit that is reliable and that has easily programmable settings so that you can save money on your home energy bills.
Whether your thermostat is broken or your HVAC unit is broken, you understandably want to correct the problem as soon as possible. These troubleshooting tips may help you to resolve the problem or may indicate that the thermostat needs to be replaced.