Tempstar ps80(?) malfunction

Hi,
I have z Tempstar - I think it's an older ps80 - furnace in my basement. Over the weekend, it has been functioning irregularly.
Please excuse any misuse of terminology - I'm among other things a mechanic, but not an hvac guy.
On the surface, somtimes the heater would go on and blow nothing but cool air around. So I had a look at the aggregate.
Correct me if I'm wrong, please: The proper order of events is this:
1). inducer motor starts up 2). heating wire glows 3). pilot light ignites on heating wire 4). two gas jets ignite on pilot light 5). fan wheel come on.
Most of Saturday, the two gas jets did not ignite, and I think it's safe to assume, there were no gas jets (the pilot was lit). However, I found that by opening the blower cabinet and pressing the 'dead-man' switch, and then going through the ignition sequence, I could always get them to ignite eventually (after maybe 8 or 10 tries).
The furnace worked fine all of Sunday, but failed one single time to ignite this morning (Monday).
Hypothesis 1). The valve is sticky or defective Hypothesis 2). The sensor (bi-metal?) is sticky or defective.
Does this sound reasonable? Or are there better explanations?
Particularly, does this sound like something that is likely to recur often that I need to do something about, or might there have been, say, some impurity or something temporarily clogging up the works?
Thanks for any help. Frank
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How many years has it been since you had it serviced?

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Dave, the furnace was in the house when we bought it three years ago. One year ago at the start of the heating season it made a horrible racket, and we had someone come and look at it - he pulled a plastic comb and a dead mouse out of the fan wheel. That's all I know. Do they need regular maintenance?
wrote:

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"Frank P" wrote

How did a mouse, get a comb in there?
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He was fleeing the papperazi, who wanted to photograph him. Don't your recognize him? That's Stuart. He's really quite famous.
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A furnace is a complicated mechanical and electrical device. Yes, it should have annual clean and check. To spot problems early, prevent problems, and keep you safe.
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I dont know where the surface heater is in your furnace and I think the aggregate needs to be replaced.

I think somewhere in there you are supposed to crack open a few beers with your buddies and then go hunting for the problem.

Sounds like you need to remove Saturday from the 7 day week.

Hire someone to push the deadman switch when you are not around

Yup, those are all good. Id replace them but while you are at it make sure and replace your defective thermostat and low voltage wiring with new matched, shielded, paired cable.

Frank, I think its going to happen a lot in your life. Be prepared. Bubba
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Sounds like time to call a competent tech to diagnose the problem and fix it. It would be a real good idea for him to service it while he is at it.
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Frank P posted for all of us...

A "mechanic" asking if something needs regular maintenance - a novel idea!
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Tekkie Don\'t bother to thank me, I do this as a public service.

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