If your heating system is no longer working, there are some diagnostic tests you can try to see what the problem may be. While only you can decide what your level of comfort is when it comes to playing around with your heating system, it's possible to check out your system to see what is wrong.
The first step is to check the thermostat on your heating system. Turn the heat up so that it is several degrees above the current temperature in the room. If you don't have a digital thermometer and you are relying on an old dial one, it's time to switch out your thermometer to a digital one. If turning up the heat doesn't work, it's time to check the power supply.
If you have a fault in your heating system, it's possible that the system tripped your circuit breaker. Check your circuit breakers to see if the one marked furnace has been tripped. You can try resetting the breaker and try turning on the heating system again. It's possible that this will solve your problem, as there could have been a temporary problem with the circuit itself.
If resetting the breaker doesn't turn on your heating fan, you could have a faulty wire in your system or a problem with your thermostat. If the fan is working, but cold air is blowing, turn up the heat at least five degrees above the temperature in the room. Warm air coming out of your heating vents at this time would indicate that you have a problem with the outdoor unit of your heating system.
When the Problem is Your Outdoor Unit
Check your outdoor heating unit to see if there is ice or frost buildup. This could simply mean that your outdoor unit needs more refrigerant, or that there is a problem with the defrost control. You can check to see if the problem is with the defrost control by manually defrosting the unit. While you can continue to try and troubleshoot your system if it is still not working, you can always call a professional heating and cooling technician in order have your system checked.
If your system has not been properly maintained, it's time to have your heating system maintained by a professional who can also troubleshoot to see what may be the problem going on. With a well-maintained system, you should be able to avoid a high number of emergency repairs this heating season. Contact a company like One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning for more information.