Heater unit problem...

It was cold enough for the heat to go on, and although the fan started blowing (forced hot air system), cold air was coming out. I went downstairs and I see that there is no ignition, so I'm guessing the ignitor is shot. This is a 10 yr old American Standard, Freedom 78 unit. The question is, is the igniter something I can change myself, or is it time to call the heating people?
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You could probably replace it yourself, but wouldn't you rather be sure it is the ignitor before you start throwing parts at it?? Greg
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O.K., that's reasonable suggestion. So how do I go about making sure it's the ignitor. When I crank the thermostat up, the fan starts, the gas starts fo about a second, but no ignitor glow, so the flow of gas stops, and the fan keeps running. After a few minutes, the gas starts flowinf for about a second, and the cycle just keeps repeating. Do you think it might be something else? Any ideas what?
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You really should call in an expert. I understand you want to save some money and you are compenent enough to do it yourself, but by the time you start "parts changing" (and that's IF you can get the parts) you may be into more money than if you called someone and had them do it right the first time.
Fixing a furnace is not rocket science, but it's nothing to fool around with if you don't know what you are doing. Bottom line? Pick up the phone and call someone out to do a proper repair....
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I'd check for current at the igniter with a multi meter. If you have current at the points the igniter connects, when the ingniter is supposed to heat up, then I'd try a new igniter. That's what I'd do.
Red Neckerson wrote:

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I had a similar problem last year and tried to do exactly that. Only, I didn't have any manuals and couldn't get any info on what the current should be at those points. So, I called in the repairman. I think it was $33 for the igniter and $95 for labor (it only took 5 min to fix, but with driving and that, it was their minimum charge). I could have saved $95 if I had the manual :-(( (Actually, I was kind-of leery fixing it myself. I always fear that I'll do something wrong and the furnace will blow up as I'm sleeping some night. I slept better knowing it had been done professionally). Plus, even if I had attempted to do it myself, I don't even know where I'd get the part.

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Good point.
That was the point I was trying to make:
It's not rocket science, but how much is piece-of-mind worth?
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in message

Current flow with a bad ignitor?? Nope ain't gonna happen. Greg
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So, do you agree that it sounds like a bad ignitor?
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No, It could be, but it could be other parts too. No, I will not give someone advise on fixing their gas furnace over the 'net. I do not know your limitations! Greg
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I fully understand, I wouldn't want to do that either, because you don't know who is on the keyboard, at the other end. Sorry I made is sound like you *had* to give me advice. I sincerely did not intend to.
In any case, I just finished replacing the glow plug. $26 for the part, one screw to unscrew, one plug to unplug (not even 5 minutes total time), and the house is already a roasty 66 degrees. Luckily, it wasn't anything more serious.
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I'm guessing that you can find an ignitor on the internet, and change it out yourself. If you're good with tools, electrical, following schematics, and so on.
But what if it's some other problem? You can go changing out parts, and never get it fixed. Or pay more than just calling a repairman who can diagnose and fix it right for you.
I don't want to sound mean, but the very fact that you're asking the question tells me that you don't have the background. Or you woulda just done it.
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You are right, I don't really have the background - I am not an HVAC technician. I was lucky that it turned out to be the igniter, so the problem is fixed.
Thanks

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I would still have it looked at. on most forced air gas furnaces, the fan will not come on until the output temp rises to a factory set temp and runs after the flame goes out to cool down the heat exchanger. someone may have "worked on" your furnaces in the past.
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As I remember it, the fan came on first from the day they installed it, about 10 years ago. The only person that has worked on it, in the past, was the HVAC person servicing it.
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