One of the very few drawbacks to living in America’s Third World County™ has been our experiences with appliance repairmen. We’ve decided over the years that going outside the county is wise, when it comes to appliance repair, whether that’s fridges, washers, or HVAC, etc. Just really bad experiences with execrably poor service from “highly-recommended” locals. *shrugs* Others’ experiences might vary, but ours? Universally poor service from local companies.
So, when cold weather hit and we needed our (gas, forced air) furnace, what happened? Well, first I changed the filter, than tried the furnace out. Right. No air. The fan would not come on, and nor would the burners. Well, since the fan and the gas valve are inter-related, via the control interface, if the fan didn’t work, the burners would not.
So, did I call someone? Nope. Tested the fan with separate power. No joy. Motor out. Replace motor (preferred option)? Nope. The thing’s apparently forty years old (!) and I think I’d have to cut it loose from the fan. Nope. Not gonna.
So, bought new fan.
The mounting bracket on the new (larger, more powerful) fan is almost the right width. wrong configuration. So, cut the mounting bracket off the old fan housing and affixed it to the new one. Fits. Mount the fan, wire it and. . . no joy.
So, I confirmed the old fan was defunct, but now the transformer/switch assembly isn’t working either? Another $25. (Note: 15 years ago, a local ripoff “repairman” charged $95 for the part. . . in an off-brand. . . and still didn’t fix the issue until he checked what I told him to check elsewhere. . . on his THIRD TRIP. HIGHLY recommended by multiple sources. MHWA.) Wired the new control relay in and. . . FAN! But no furnace ignition. Pilot light working fine, but gas valve: no joy.
Hmmm. . . sit back. Check Internet to see if my wiring job was right (the wiring diagram from the control relay mfg. did NOT make sense according to the wiring diagram on the furnace’s service panel, so I had transferred wires one at a time from the old relay. Maybe that was the problem. *heh*) Well, yes and no. It seems a wire from the relay to to gas valve HAD BROKEN and dropped down during my rewiring. (Dark, old eyes–hence difficulty focusing–“headlight” focused in wrong place, etc. I just missed it dropping off the gas valve.) Found it later on the floor and wondered where it had come from.
The ONLY clue I got from my hunting on the Internet was a YouTube video where a guy pointed out, on a similar but not the same, SPDT relay where the gas valve wiring FROM the relay should be connected. Fortunately, he also called it by name, so I could locate the correct place to wire it in on my relay.
At last, joy. Warm last night. Almost too warm for me, frankly. 70°F is just too warm for indoor Autumn living. Heck, places near a register and away from the thermostat have gotten up to 73°-75°! Turned down a tad.
Note: what I learned? Oh, I already knew to do it, but I forgot to take pictures of the installation before I replaced the relay. *head-desk* Oh, well. Would have saved a headache, but all’s well, and all that.
P.S. #2: May also need a new thermostat. Cool temps today, furnace apparently came on a few times, though, and most of the house is at 75° even though the thermostat is set at 68°. It might not be a problem. Could just have been solar gain, since we are fairly well insulated and the house–overall–started out around 70°, with the previously noted “hot spots”.