How Do You Know When the Thermostat Is Broken in Your House?

You are sitting on the couch and shivering a little. You pull a comforter over your lap and legs to give some warmth. You keep shivering. You have your thermostat set on 76 degrees, yet the house is getting colder. What is happening?

This scenario is annoying and happens too often. You have a broken thermostat. This is quite a frustration. In the summer, If you notice you are getting warmer and the room is getting hotter, you are also experiencing an issue with your thermostat. 

These situations are annoying and they waste energy. You could have a broken thermostat. The usual signals that your thermostat needs a tuneup or repair are the following:

  • The air conditioning or heat comes on, but stays on past the selected temperature, or else cuts in and out before the temperature reaches the preferred setting.
  • Thermostat reading says “off” or it is non-responsive.
  • Turning on the heat or air conditioning does nothing.

In most instances when your air conditioner or heat doesn’t produce the desired temperature, it means your thermostat is broken. This inability to regulate the temperature can also be a sign of the air conditioner or furnace having a problem. This condition can also mean the duct system in your house is leaking. 

Do It Yourself Diagnosis

Before you contact us about a thermostat dilemma, we suggest you delve into the predicament and try to find your own solution. Our experts in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems suggest you follow the steps below to find the source of trouble.

This method of fixing the thermostat is a checkup on a digital thermostat. Take these steps:

  1. Is the power on? Verify that the furnace or air conditioner is getting electricity. This is the point where you check the circuit breakers.
  2. Replace the batteries in the thermostat. This easy procedure often solves the problem.
  3. Clean your thermostat. Start by removing batteries in the unit and cut the electrical power. Often dust, nicotine soot, and debris can clutter the interior of the thermostat. Most units open easily so you can clean them. Other types of thermostats require that you remove the faceplate to access the inside of the unit. Gently brush the interior with a dry paintbrush or another soft item.

If your home is equipped with an older, electromechanical thermostat, you might need to take extra steps. When you open the unit, you may see a metal strip in a circle — similar to a coil. Gently push this strip in any direction and see if that solves the issue. If you have the user’s manual, read it to see if it offers additional steps.

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