One of the most critical components of a furnace is its flame sensor. If it’s not working as it should, your home won’t achieve the desired comfort levels due to the lack of heating being produced by the system. Here local HVAC contractor Climate Systems shares everything you need to know about the furnace flame sensor, including its basic function and location. 

Everything You Need to Know About the Furnace Flame Sensor

What Does a Flame Sensor Do?

The flame sensor of a furnace is a safety device that detects whether the equipment is producing a flame and burning gas. Located in front of the burners, it’s a rod that juts out where the flame comes out of the burner. It’s always on the opposite side of the ignitor as well. For instance, the flame sensor is on the left side, while the ignitor is located on the right side of the burners.

When the burners produce a flame, the rod-shaped protrusion detects it and sends an electrical signal to the furnace’s control board, signifying that everything is functioning correctly. If no flame is detected, the sensor won’t send a signal to the control board. The control board, in turn, shuts down the furnace a few seconds after opening the gas valve. This keeps the unburned gas from leaking out of the system, averting a potentially dangerous situation.

Signs of a Failing Flame Sensor

A furnace has a bad flame sensor if it shuts down just a few seconds after turning on. You might think of having it replaced, but for the most part, when this component isn’t functioning properly, it’s due to excess soot and dirt. Over time, dirt can accumulate on the sensor, making it hard for the furnace to warm your house.

Before your heating system overheats and short cycles because of a dirty flame sensor, get in touch with your local HVAC technician to have it inspected and cleaned. It only takes a few minutes and may extend the life of your heating system.

Climate Systems is the leading contractor for your residential and commercial HVAC needs. Count on our skilled, experienced heating and cooling pros to keep your home comfortable all-year-round. Call (724) 935-3900 or fill out our contact form to schedule a service appointment.

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