Electricity And Your Home Furnace: What You Need To Know

image of hvac technician checking furnace circuit

For regular operation, furnaces are dependent in part on electricity. If the furnace trips circuit breaker for some reason, your home furnace will come to a grinding halt and leave you vulnerable to the cold. If an event like this is the result of a rare power surge, then simply resetting your furnace should restore normal functioning. However, if your furnace trips circuit breaker repeatedly, then a reset will not do the job. This is a dangerous situation that warrants a deeper investigation. You have to identify the source of the problem and find a lasting solution by working with an expert. Keep reading to get more information on this particular issue.

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Why Does My Furnace Need Electricity?

Even though furnaces largely rely on fuel to heat the indoor air, several components within this equipment require electricity. Cutting the power supply off will keep this equipment from working as it should. It has to have a constant and uninterrupted flow of electricity for truly superior performance.

The Blower Motor In Your Furnace Is Powered With Electricity

Every furnace has an electrically powered blower motor. This sends warm air throughout the home. If the power supply is off, then the blower motor will stop working, and the heated air will stay right near the furnace rather than being circulated throughout the building.

Electric Ignition

An older furnace will have a pilot light for ignition. In modern heating systems, this is a setup that has been largely replaced with electric ignitions. While electric ignitions are significantly more reliable, they do rely on an electrical supply from the grid. As such, you will not be able to turn these furnaces on if they lack power.

image of a furnace circuit breaker repair


6 Reasons Why Your Circuit Breaker May Be Getting Tripped By Your Furnace

It isn’t normal to have a circuit breaker that keeps tripping. Simply resetting this isn’t going to prevent the problem from recurring. You have to learn why these incidents keep happening in order to determine how best to resolve the issues. Following are six common reasons:

1. The Furnace Filter Is Clogged

Your furnace may be overworking as the result of a dirty, clogged filter. With too much dirt, there isn’t a free airflow. Thus, the system has to overcompensate by using additional power to boost its overall performance. This can overload the circuit and cause the breaker to trip.

Check the filters in your HVAC system and clean these or replace them as needed. It’s best to perform these inspections and replacements at least once each month.

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2. HVAC Air Registers Or Vents Are Blocked

The same issue can occur when the air registers or air vents are blocked at various points throughout the system. A furnace will start working harder to keep the home warm. Thereby, it consumes far more power than normal. Check to see if any obstructions are blocking your vents such as closed curtains or large furnishings. Move these things out of the way to restore normal airflow.

image of hvac air vents


3. The Furnace Motor Is Having Issues

You may find that the motor in your furnace is faulty. After multiple years of service, the internal wiring may be wearing down. This can cause shorts and a variety of other problems that cause the circuit breaker to trip. Get in touch with an HVAC technician to have the motor replaced right away. Regularly maintaining your HVAC system will help you avoid this problem going forward.

4. There’s A Leak In Your HVAC Ductwork

Air leaks in your HVAC ductwork can cause inefficiencies throughout your heating system. Your furnace is going to work twice as hard to replace any air that is lost through the leaks. This extra demand can cause the circuit breaker to trip.

image of hvac air ducts


5. You Need To Have Electric Panel Repairs Performed

Sometimes the furnace isn’t the issue at all, and it’s necessary to look in other areas. It could be that the electrical panel is the source of the problem. Faulty panels should be repaired by professionals right away.

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6. You Have A Shared, Overloaded Circuit

Furnaces draw a significant amount of power. It is best to have this on its own separate circuit because sharing it with other appliances can result in an overload. Keep power tools, lights, and all other appliances away from the circuit for your furnace.

What To Do When The Circuit Breaker Gets Tripped By Your Furnace

1. Check The Air Filter In Your Heating Equipment

Make a point of regularly checking the air filters in your furnace. Dirt can build up on these components. If too much debris accumulates, airflow will be greatly diminished.

image of a furnace hvac filter


2. Check To Ensure That Your HVAC Air Vents Aren’t Obstructed

Move any curtains, furnishings, or other items that might be blocking your HVAC vents. Keep these vents open in every room, even in rooms that aren’t in use.

3. Contact An HVAC Company To Have Your Ductwork Professionally Inspected

Ductwork has a long reputation for being very difficult to take care of. Have a professional inspection performed as needed. Repair any damage so prevent leaks. Also, if it has been a while, then be sure to have your ducts cleaned. An expert can complete this work efficiently and quickly.

image of an HVAC contractor inspecing hvac ductwork


4. Call An HVAC Technician For Professional Furnace Repairs

Novices can cause more problems than they actually resolve. You might want to save some cash by fixing the furnace problem on your own. However, you’ll likely wind up paying far more as a result. Electrical problems relating to your furnace should always be handled by qualified HVAC professionals who can implement reliable and fast solutions.


Some circuit breaker problems can be quite serious. If your furnace is causing your circuit breaker to trip, look for the common triggers mentioned above. Don’t leave the problem unchecked as it can eventually lead to fires and many other dangers. For assured peace of mind, get professional help right away.

Contact Lawes Company For Furnace Repair Services You Can Trust

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Lawes Company is proud to offer superior heating and cooling solutions in the local area. Our technicians are NATE-certified, friendly, and capable of offering excellent replacements, installations, repairs, and tune-up services. They are knowledgeable and can complete the necessary work correctly the first time around.

When you need to have your home furnace or HVAC system replaced or fixed, you’re in trustworthy hands with Lawes Company. Our HVAC service costs are competitive and backed by our guarantee. Our priorities are energy efficiency, home comfort, and optimum indoor air qualities, among many other things. Call Lawes Company now to get a no-cost, in-home estimate.

Call Now: (732) 741-6300

Contact us now at (732) 741-6300 to find out more!