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Emergency Heating Tips: What to Do When the Heat Goes Out

Woman in a jacket adjusting her thermostat

When temperatures dip, it doesn’t take long to notice when your heating system goes out. Here are some tips to deal with a heating emergency.

Turn Off Your Gas

If your home uses a gas furnace and the heat goes out, it’s important to turn off the gas supply. A gas leak or valve malfunction might have caused your heating system to fail. The gas source should be turned off until a professional can evaluate the cause.

Close Off Unused Rooms

Concentrate the heat into a few rooms, rather than allowing it to dissipate into all the areas of the house, by closing the doors and vents for unused rooms.

Seal Doors and Windows

Feel around your doors and windows for drafts. You can use towels to temporarily block cold air from leaking in.

Turn Faucets to a Slow Drip

Some pipes, especially those along an exterior wall, can freeze if temperatures dip below freezing and the indoor air temperatures are cold. Turn your faucets to a low drip and open cabinets and closets that contain plumbing to circulate warm air and prevent frozen pipes.

Use a Portable Heater

Portable heaters can be helpful to heat a room in your home while you’re waiting for your HVAC system to be repaired. It’s important to remember to use your space heater safely following the manufacturer’s manual and never leave your space heater unattended.

How to Troubleshoot Your Heating System

Here are some troubleshooting tips that could restore your heat quickly:

  • Check the thermostat: Your first move should be to ensure the thermostat is set to heat mode and set to a temperature that should trigger the heating system to turn on.
  • Check the circuit breaker: Sometimes, a tripped circuit breaker can cause the heating system to stop working. Check the circuit breaker box and reset any tripped breakers related to the heating system.
  • Inspect the furnace: Head down to the room where your furnace is located, which is most likely the basement. Ensure the pilot light is lit (if applicable) and there are no obvious signs of damage or malfunction.
  • Ensure that all vents and registers are open and unobstructed: Do you happen to be in a room where a vent is closed, and warm air bypasses the space? Blocked vents can prevent warm air from circulating properly.
  • Look for ice on your heat pump: If there is ice on the exterior of your unit, disconnect the power to the unit and use warm water to attempt to melt it. If it doesn’t thaw or doesn’t restart, call a professional.
  • Check your air filter: A dirty air filter can restrict airflow and cause the heating system to work inefficiently or even shut down. If the air filter is dirty, replace it with a clean one.
  • Ensure you don’t have electricity issues: If you suspect the issue is related to your gas or electricity supply, contact your utility company to report the problem.

Rely on Russo Bros. for Heating Services in Northern New Jersey

When your heat goes out in the winter, it must be fixed quickly. At Russo Bros. & Co., our experts can fix your HVAC system no matter what make or model. And we are proud to provide responsive heating solutions that Northern New Jersey residents can rely on.

Call (973) 887-1334 today to request heating repair services in Northern New Jersey.