Trane XE78 heater problems

My house has two Trane XE78’s, one for the upper floor and the other for the bottom two floors.  The upstairs unit which resides in the attic was blowing cold air.  Late at night, when asked by my wife to check it out late at night…my half sleepy body climbed up the retractable attic foldaway stairs.  And I stepped through a piece of sheetrock over the main hallway.  But that will have to be for another story…

Today…I awoke and it was bitterly cold.  After checking on the kids and covering my youngest one up who had managed to push off all the blankets and curl up into a little ball to retain heat, I decided to wait until everyone was up and I was fully awake before trying to figure out what was happening.

I researched the problem on the web with Google and found several helpful websites: has several problem/solutions; was another helpful website; as was and

After I read some of the problems and solutions, I went back upstairs to study what exactly my Trane was doing.  At first I thought it was starting and then shutting off just fine as it should.  However, I thought that after a couple days, it was actually not starting at all.

Upon further investigation, I noticed in fact that while the burners were lighting, after a few seconds they would go back out.  In a short moment, they would relight, and back off again.  All the time while the blower was blowing air.  After the blower cycle, everything shut off, until the Trane had to kick back on.

Since I read that the temp. probe that sits in front of the 1st flame/blower could be dirty.  I decided to take the recommended solution, remove it and clean it with sandpaper.

I turned off the gas, and switch located next to the Trane (a wall mounted switch on a support beam).  Then I safely disconnected the wire that used an easy connect/disconnect that reminds me of the same type of connector used when wiring car stereos.  Next I removed the probe with one screw (socket head) and then cleaned it with sand paper.  I did notice small amounts of carbon trace buildup…but nothing I would have suspected as creating the problem as it didn’t look like a lot.

Once I connected everything back, I turned everything back on and watched.  Wow…it works.  I safely walked back to the stairs and checked several heating ducts.  Wow….hot air!

Not only did the internet save me money.  But this fix was so easy… it has taught me a valuable lesson in home repair.  I usually tend to not have time to fix such things, and just tell my wife to call the repair man.  In this case…I think I sort of got lucky.  Maybe its because I still know I have to repair that ceiling over the hallway.  That will be another weekend…


5 responses to “Trane XE78 heater problems


  2. Sorry Derrick, I don’t. I did some searching and couldn’t come up with anything either. If I do happen to find one, I’ll post it here and email you. Anyone else comes across this and posts one to me, I’ll fwd. it your way.

  3. My Trane forced heater model xe78, red light on the control board continually blinks. The furnace ignites and then it shuts of automatically. I can get the furnace to stay on until the house heats up. What is the problem?

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