how to reset furnace circuit breaker


How to Reset Furnace Circuit Breaker

Is your furnace not working? Before you panic and call a technician, there's a possibility that all you need to do is reset the furnace circuit breaker. The furnace circuit breaker is an essential component of your heating system, as it protects it from electrical overloads and short circuits. In this article, we will guide you through the process of resetting the furnace circuit breaker. No more freezing temperatures inside your home, let's get started!

Understanding the Furnace Circuit Breaker

Before we dive into the resetting process, it's essential to understand what the furnace circuit breaker does. The furnace circuit breaker is a safety switch that automatically interrupts the power supply to the furnace when an electrical overload or short circuit occurs. It is usually located inside the electrical panel of your home.

When a fault is detected, the circuit breaker trips, cutting off the electricity flow to the furnace. Resetting the circuit breaker restores power to the furnace, allowing it to function correctly. However, it's crucial to identify and address the root cause of the fault before resetting.

Identifying the Problem

The first step in resetting the furnace circuit breaker is to identify the problem that caused it to trip. There are several potential reasons for the circuit breaker to trip, including:

1. Electrical Overload: An electrical overload occurs when you have too many appliances or devices connected to the same circuit. This can happen if you have added new appliances or experienced a power surge.

2. Short Circuit: A short circuit occurs when a hot wire comes into direct contact with a neutral wire or ground wire. This is usually caused by damaged insulation or faulty wiring.

3. Mechanical Failure: Mechanical failures within the furnace itself, such as a motor issue or a malfunctioning component, can cause the circuit breaker to trip.

4. Faulty Wiring: Poorly installed or outdated wiring can lead to circuit breaker trips.

By identifying the underlying problem, you can prevent further trips and ensure the safety and efficiency of your heating system.

Resetting the Furnace Circuit Breaker

Now that you have a better understanding of the furnace circuit breaker and the possibilities behind its tripping, let's move on to the process of resetting it. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Locate the Electrical Panel: The electrical panel is typically found in the basement, utility room, or garage. It contains the circuit breakers that control the various electrical components in your home, including the furnace.

2. Switch Off the Circuit Breaker: Open the electrical panel door and locate the circuit breaker that controls the furnace. It should be clearly labeled. To reset the circuit breaker, switch it into the "off" position. You may need to push it firmly to ensure it fully trips.

3. Inspect the Breaker: After switching off the circuit breaker, take a moment to inspect it for any signs of damage, such as burns or melted components. If you notice any abnormalities, it's best to consult a professional for further assessment.

4. Wait for a Couple of Minutes: Once the circuit breaker is switched off, give it a few minutes to cool down and reset internally. During this time, double-check the electrical panel for any other labeled breakers that may be related to the furnace or heating system.

5. Reset the Circuit Breaker: After the waiting period, switch the circuit breaker back into the "on" position. You should hear a click as it engages. This restores power to the furnace, and if all goes well, it should start running again.

Preventing Future Trips

While resetting the furnace circuit breaker is a simple process, it's essential to address the underlying issue to prevent future trips. Here are a few tips to help prevent the circuit breaker from tripping again:

1. Reduce Electrical Load: Take note of all the appliances and devices connected to the same circuit as the furnace. If there are multiple high-power devices, consider redistributing them across multiple circuits or using surge protectors to prevent overloads.

2. Check Electrical Wiring: Inspect the wiring leading to the furnace for any signs of wear, damage, or loose connections. If you notice any issues, contact a qualified electrician to evaluate and make necessary repairs.

3. Schedule Regular Maintenance: Regular furnace maintenance by a licensed technician can help identify and address potential issues before they cause a circuit breaker trip. It also ensures that your furnace operates efficiently and lasts longer.

4. Keep the Area Clean: Make sure the area around the furnace is free from dust, debris, and flammable materials. A clean environment reduces the risk of overheating and potential circuitry issues.

5. Upgrade Outdated Wiring: If your home's electrical system is old or outdated, consider consulting with an electrician about upgrading the wiring. Modern wiring systems are designed to accommodate higher electrical loads and reduce the risk of circuit breaker trips.


Resetting a furnace circuit breaker is a simple process that can save you time and money. By understanding the purpose of the circuit breaker, identifying potential causes of tripping, and following the proper steps, you can get your furnace up and running again. Remember, resetting the circuit breaker is a temporary solution. If it continues to trip frequently, it's crucial to call a qualified professional to inspect and resolve the underlying issue. Stay warm and cozy with a well-functioning furnace!


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