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Why Is My Heater Blowing Cold Air?


Winter is finally here in the Valley of the Sun. In fact, with overnight lows in the 40’s, you may have even flipped on your heater as well—or are thinking of doing so.


The first time you switch over from cold to hot you may experience a blast of cold air. What the what? Here are some issues you might be having if you find your heater running cold.


Is Your Heater Blowing Out Cold Air?


If you are one of those unlucky people and dealing with a heater blowing out only cool air instead of hot, then there is a chance that it might be an easy problem to fix for the do it yourselfer.


Even if you are not a DIY home technician, there are generally only a few reasons why your heater might be blowing cold air. Usually you can easily identify the culprit without calling an HVAC professional. Of course, fixing it may require the big guns, but we’ll get to that in a minute.


Common Problems with Heaters and Furnaces


One of the most common problems that could be causing your heater to malfunction is a faulty thermostat. No matter what kind of heater your home has, it will have a thermostat and this is where your troubles begin.


To start the troubleshooting process for your heater, try these steps:


  • Let the heater run for 10 minutes and check if hot air is beginning to come out after that time has elapsed.

  • Check the temperature setting on the thermostat. The problem may be as simple as that it’s not set hot enough.

  • Check or replace the batteries inside the thermostat. Not all thermostats use batteries, but those that do depend on them to work.

  • Adjust the fan switch; try setting it to auto – it may not be in the heating cycle.

  • Check the temperature around where the thermostat lives. If it’s in a hot area of your home, such as behind a TV, it might never kick on the heater because it thinks your home is already hot.

Another common problem for a heater blowing only cold air is that the pilot light might be out. The pilot light is a small flame that is always lit when you have the furnace turned on.


The pilot light might simply just need to be re-lit, or the gas valve could have been shut off after last season’s use.


If you have a gas-powered furnace in your home, one problem could be the gas supply to your furnace. For a gas-line furnace make sure the valve going to your furnace is turned on.

Another solution is to ensure you have gas coming into your home by checking a gas-powered stove or oven.


For many of us in Phoenix, we have electric-powered furnaces. Be sure that the furnace is plugged in. Typically, the furnace is the air conditioner, so you’ll likely have it on all year long, but it’s a worth the check just for sanity’s sake.


Still Having Problems?


If you’d done all the DIY checks of your system and you’re still feeling cold air, then it’s time to escalate the issue. There’s no reason to be uncomfortable during the winter, so give us a call at Forrest Anderson. When your HVAC unit is blowing cold air, it could be a more serious problem.


Ask us about our service contracts to receive two included inspections and 15% off any services!


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