Reduce Furnace Noise: How To Quiet A Noisy Furnace
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As soon as the winter season approaches, I cannot wait to snuggle up in bed with my favorite blanket, make myself a nice cup of hot tea and pick up a book or put on my favorite Netflix show.
Most of you will likely agree with me that there is nothing better than a warm, cozy house on a freezing winter morning.
I personally prefer to use a fireplace to keep me warm during winter days, but some people do not have the luxury of owning a fireplace, so they use a furnace or an electric heater instead.
Have a boiler? Read this: Guide to Soundproofing Boiler Room
As you probably know, furnaces are usually located in a separate room, most likely in the basement, since they do not look particularly presentable with all the pipes and the additional equipment, so most people prefer to hide them away.
However, anyone who owns a furnace will agree that the noise coming from the furnace room can be quite annoying and can become unbearable over time.
Despite the fact that the furnace is usually in the basement, the noise it emits still spreads throughout the house.
Furthermore, if you use your basement as a guest room, playing room, or anything of the sort, then the furnace room might become an even bigger nuisance.
The playing room you decorated for your kids might not end up being the most pleasant place to hang out in with all the noise coming from the furnace room barely a meter away.
A noisy furnace can make those irritating whistling and banging sounds for a number of reasons.
Perhaps your filters are dirty or there is a problem with your ductwork which can result in oil canning.
Or maybe the air flow in your furnace is low because of leaky ducts.
If you own an older kind of furnace, then there is a possibility that its motor needs to be repaired.
But do not let all of this scare you.
I am here to let you know how to handily fix these and many other problems with your furnace with your own two hands – you won’t have to spend all the money on hiring a professional.
Whatever the issue might be, I will provide you with some of the best ways to soundproof your furnace room and get some peace and quiet while still staying warm.
reduce furnace noise: how to quiet a noisy furnace
What You'll Be Needing:
1. Fix the weak spots
If the ductwork in your furnace is faulty, the furnace will produce a banging sound because of the oil-canning.
This noise can sound a bit like thunder – not the most pleasant sound, you will agree.
First of all, you need to find a weak spot in the ducts.
Once you’ve found it, all you have to do is get a thick piece of metal and screw it on the weak spot, and voila – your problem is solved.
You can also try to fix the weak spot in the ducts by denting it with a hammer.
However, if you’re not very experienced with tools, screwing a piece of metal on the spot is definitely a better and easier choice.
2. Fix the gas ignition problem
There is also a possibility that there is a problem with gas ignition in your furnace.
How can you know if this is the reason your furnace is noisy?
Well, once you start the furnace, you should pay attention to two things:
Are the furnace doors shaking?
Do you notice any unusually large flames in the furnace?
If you notice any of these two things, or (hopefully not) both of them, then it is highly likely that you’re dealing with a very serious problem.
It’s a relief to know that some of the new furnace models have a sensor that is programmed to turn off the problematic part of your furnace if this happens, but if you own an older kind of furnace, then you might not notice this problem until it is too late.
This is definitely a situation where it is recommendable to call a professional.
3. Replace dirty filters
Now you know what do to if you’re dealing with the banging noises from your furnace, but what if the noise doesn’t sound like banging, but like whistling?
If this is the case, then in all possibility there is a problem with the airflow.
This kind of problem can be solved rather easily most of the time – you should simply remove your furnace filter and buy a new one.
But how can you know if the filter is the cause of the noise?
Well, I have an easy solution for this one as well.
You see, if your filter is dirty and clogged, then the air cannot pass through it properly.
Since the holes are clogged and therefore smaller, the air makes the sound similar to whistling when it passes through those holes.
First of all, you need to take your filter out of the furnace.
If the noise stops once the filter is taken out, then the filter is obviously the problem.
So all you have to do is get a new one. Luckily, I’ve done a bit of research and found an affordable furnace filter for you on Amazon.
A dirty filter can also affect the furnace motor.
It can cause the motor to run faster and therefore make a louder noise, so you can end up thinking that your motor has stopped functioning and not realise that you simply have to change your filters.
I recommend that you keep in mind that dirty filters are probably the most common cause of furnace malfunction, so they should be the first thing you check when you’re trying to figure out what’s wrong.
By checking your filters, you can avoid spending a bunch of money and time on repairs and failed attempts to fix the furnace.
4. Fill the gaps in the ducts
But what will you do if you find out that your filters are working just fine, but your furnace still keeps making the whistling noise?
This is the sign that you should take a look at your duct and see if there are any gaps in it.
If you see any gaps in the part of the duct that is connected with the furnace, next to the blower, that means you have to seal the gap as soon as possible.
The easiest way to do this is to seal it with duct tape, but you can use foil tape as well.
A solution that is a little bit more expensive but certainly the most efficient one is to seal it with high-temperature silicone.
5. Resize your air ducts
A problem may also occur if the air ducts in your furnace are too small.
Fortunately, all you need to do to is to take off the furnace door and let some air in.
If that doesn’t work for you, you can simply try resizing or replacing the air ducts, but you would probably need to hire a professional to do that.
Or you can just get yourself a permeable filter that has bigger holes on Amazon and improve the air flow in your furnace.
6. Fix the loose parts
If your furnace keeps producing rattling sounds or keeps vibrating there are probably some loose parts in it that need to be fixed.
This can easily be solved if you just add some more screws to the air duct, or put duct-tape on the loose parts.
If the floor of your furnace room is made of concrete or some similar hard surface, the vibrating sounds your furnace makes will certainly be intolerably loud.
Fortunately, this is an easy one – you will just need to get some rubber pads, place them on the floor under the furnace and your problem is solved.
7. Repair your ductwork
Sometimes the furnace can make a squeaking noise, and by now you can probably already guess that the problem is in the poor duct work.
If the duct work on the ceiling below is faulty due to the metal part of it that was not nailed properly or due to the fact that the duct is too tight, all you have to do is reinforce the duct or rehang it.
8. Fix the motor
If you own an old furnace, it is likely that its motor will stop working properly at one point or another.
If the motor has a complicated design, you will probably need to replace it, since it can be rather demanding to try and fix it yourself if you’re not a professional.
However, if the motor design is not so intricate, you can surely try fixing it yourself.
The motor bearings can become quite worn down over time, which means you will need to lubricate them.
This is a rather simple and inexpensive process.
You need to apply some lubrication oil on the bearings, or if your motor has plugs or caps, you just need to remove them and then use the lubrication oil.
9. Insulate the walls
If none of the above options work for you and your furnace is still too loud, there is always the option of insulating your walls in order to prevent the noise.
Still, you have to consider the fact that this is not a good idea for just any furnace room.
How spacey is the room? What kind of furnace do you own?
All of these things need to be considered before deciding on insulating the walls.
There are two common types of furnaces: atmospheric and sealed.
Let me explain.
An atmospheric furnace uses air from within the house, and a sealed furnace uses air from outside the house which it draws in through a PVC pipe.
Figuring out the type of furnace you have is perfectly easy: if you open your furnace while it’s working and see the blue light on the flames, then you have an atmospheric furnace.
If there aren’t any blue lights on the flames, then your furnace is a sealed type.
Now, if your furnace is atmospheric, there has to be enough air in the room because this kind of furnace draws on the air from inside the house to create combustion.
If you seal the furnace room that has an atmospheric furnace too tightly, this will without doubt result in a lot of dirty flames coming from the furnace, and you surely don’t want that to happen.
You will need to put a louver vent in the door to ensure that there is enough air.
Some of the noise from the furnace room might come out through the vent, but that won’t bother you that much, since most of the noise will be blocked by the isolation in the walls.
You can also opt to drywall your ceiling in order to stop the noise from travelling to the upper floor.
This is a fairly cheap solution which you can probably manage to execute on your own if you’re the type of person that enjoys repairs and working on the house.
On furnace blower noise reduction
In conclusion, your furnace will make all kinds of different noises depending on the cause of its malfunction.
As you now already know, the problem can either be in the air flow that doesn’t flow properly, in the dirty filters or faulty duct work.
All of these problems can appear in both older and newer furnaces.
However, when you own an older furnace, there is a high possibility that the problem is in the faulty motor.
If you don’t enjoy mechanical jobs and fixing stuff, you can simply decide to call a professional.
But even if you decide to do so, I hope this article can provide you with some insight into how furnaces function.
By using the advice I provided you with, you can easily and safely inspect the furnace yourself.
This can help you both the time of the professional you hired and your money since he will do the work faster once you’ve given him the information he needs.
I sincerely hope you will find this article useful and that it will help you finally get some peaceful sleep and warmth without any unnecessary noise.
How to Reduce Furnace Noise
All furnace owners know how noisy a furnace can get sometimes. Here's your definitive guide on how to reduce furnace noise and quiet a noisy blower.
- Fix The Weak Spots
- Fix The Gas Ignition Problem
- Replace Dirty Filters
- Fill The Gaps In The Ducts
- Resize Your Air Ducts
- Fix The Loose Parts
- Repair Your Ductwork
- Fix The Motor
- Insulate The Walls