Your heating appliance's flame sensor is responsible for ensuring that your home remains safe and comfortable. This is because it detects any significant changes with your flame and then shuts down your appliance to prevent your home from the risk of a fire outbreak. So, when it's not functioning as it should, seek professional help. Here are ways to tell that your flame sensor is problematic.
There's Dirt Buildup on the Appliance's Flame Sensor
When you have a heavy buildup of dirt on the flame sensor of your heating appliance, you should expect to experience problems with your furnace. Usually, cases of soot buildup on the sensor usually result from high humidity levels or when the sensor is approaching the end of its useful life. This is also likely to happen if you don't perform regular furnace cleaning. The formation of a dirt layer on the sensor won't effectively detect heat, which can cause your furnace to keep short cycling.
Your Burner Flame Is Yellow
If you're using a gas furnace, inspect to make sure that the flame is firing in your burner through the peephole. When working correctly, the flame should be blue with a small section at the top that's yellow. If the flame is yellow in color, it indicates that the gas that you're using isn't burning completely. This can happen if carbon monoxide isn't being removed from your system. In such a case, it's advisable to call the appliance service technician to inspect your unit and make the necessary repairs.
There Are Visible Signs Of Cracks On The Flame Sensor
The outer section of the flame sensor is constructed from porcelain. So, if you notice signs of cracks and the furnace flame keeps turning on and off, the sensor is likely problematic. Remember that the flame sensor is designed to detect temperature changes. So, when it breaks, its ability to detect heat effectively will be compromised.
You're Experiencing A Rise In Energy Costs
If your electricity cost is higher than usual during the cold season, it's most likely caused by a faulty flame sensor. When the sensor doesn't work as it should, it will make your unit work harder than usual to attain its full potential, leading to a spike in your energy costs. Understand that many underlying factors can cause a rise in electricity cost, so only an experienced professional can advise whether your electricity cost spike is due to a faulty sensor.
The flame sensor must operate properly for your furnace to achieve top performance. If your furnace is exhibiting any of the signs mentioned above, seek the help of experienced heating services.