Do You Have To Relight Furnace After Power Outage

Homeowners that live in colder climates are always concerned about their furnaces working properly during the colder months. No one wants to get caught in an ice storm with zero heat options. For many, a furnace is their only option. For others, a furnace, space heater, and fireplace are all available heat sources. Regardless, your furnace is likely the main provider of heat in your home. Homeowners will want to maintain a furnace protocol in the event of a power outage. For example, do you have to relight furnace after power outage? Yes, if your pilot light goes out, you will want to shut off the gas line and wait for power.

Let’s take a look below at some steps you can take to stay safe if your furnace loses power.

How Does This Happen

The majority of furnaces are fueled by natural gas. Since natural gas is used to heat your home, a safety system is in place. Once power is lost, the safety system kicks in and shuts down the furnace. If you would like to maintain the functionality of a furnace during a power outage, you will want to install a generator. Homeowners should never attempt to configure a way for their furnace to operate during a power outage. Call your local HVAC professional to recommend the best options for keeping your furnace going during a power outage. Consequently, your furnace does have a few components that require electricity. So, the quicker you can create a solution, the more functional your furnace becomes.

A high efficiency furnace will require electricity. You will call a professional if it needs to be relit.

What Parts Use Electricity

If you lose electricity, parts of your furnace will not work without electricity. Without these parts, your furnace will not function. Check the thermostat and blown fuses before determining if the gas furnace works. Let’s take a look below at those parts that do require electricity.

  • Blower motor – this runs the fan that pushes the heated air into your home. Also, it pushes waste products that are created as a result of the combustion process out of the flue.
  • Circuit board – the purpose of the furnace circuit board is to send information from the furnace to the thermostat. Without power, this will not work.
  • Relays – there are relay switches that control gas flow. They also control safety devices that will control the amount of fuel used and the thermocouple.

In some cases, a home can be built with a floor furnace. These types of furnaces use natural gas and use a thermopile generator to create an electrical current that sends messages from the furnace to the thermostat. Convection pushes the heat into your home. No electricity is used for this type of furnace.

What Are The Steps If I Have A Power Outage

In the event that your gas furnace does not restart after a power outage, go ahead and follow these steps, once power is turned back on.

  • Check to ensure that the furnace is switched on.
  • Look at the control panel. If there is an error message flashing, this is an indication that a repair or replacement is needed on a part. Any error messages mean your furnace will not start.
  • Check to ensure no fuses were blown and the circuit breaker was not tripped.
  • Look at the venting section of your furnace to ensure that ice or snow isn’t blocking it.
  • Check the safety lock. If it is engaged, you will need to hit the reset button one time. If you hit the reset button too many times, the system might invoke the child-safety lock mechanism.
  • Ensure that your thermostat is online and turned up to restart the furnace and produce heat for your home.

Other Recommended Maintenance

Now that you understand if you have to relight your furnace pilot light after a power outage, it might be a good idea to read up on why your furnace isn’t turning on. Once power is restored, the idea is that the furnace picks up where it left off. However, that is not always the case. Should your furnace not turn on, reach out to your local HVAC professional.

Next, if you are experiencing an issue with your furnace not turning on, it is a good idea to call on your local HVAC professional. However, before they arrive, you might want to check on your furnace filter. It could be as simple as replacing your black filter. This would be a good time to read up on where is the filter on your furnace.

Lastly, another part of your HVAC system that could throw your furnace into disarray is the thermostat. Be sure to have your thermostat checked by a professional if it appears that air is not properly circulating through your home. A bad thermostat can not only damage your furnace and total HVAC system, but it can have you believing that temperatures are not what they seem.

Check your basement furnace during a power outage to make sure all components are safe.

When Do I Call A Professional

When it comes to a furnace, you will always call a professional. Homeowners should not be dealing with furnace issues on their own. HVAC repair companies are great at assessing any issues with your furnace and HVAC system. They can re-lite your pilot light after a power outage has occurred. Also, they will inspect your circuits and furnace parts to ensure that everything is working properly. If you don’t have a reputable furnace repair technician, reach out to your local home inspection team. Not only will they inspect your furnace and home, but they can also recommend a reputable furnace repair technician or HVAC system service company.


To ensure that your furnace is working properly even after a power outage, call on your local HVAC system service company. As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to keep your family safe and your investment protected. You can do both by maintaining your furnace and other home appliances on a regular basis. If you aren’t sure who to call, reach out to your local home inspection team. They will inspect your electrical systems and recommend the best approach to keep your furnace operational. Call on Heartland Inspections services in greater Minneapolis St. Paul and surrounding areas for your home inspection needs.