Furnace heating systems are not inherently dangerous, however concerns about the safety of natural gas appliances are common, and ignoring the risk wouldn’t be responsible of us.
First off though, it’s important for us to mention that gas furnaces are the most common type of heating system found throughout the country, and it’s for good reason. They do not have a bad safety record. If they did, they wouldn’t be installed in so many living spaces. The manufacturers of gas-powered heaters are required to design the systems with numerous safety features that meet all sorts of codes. Look for an ENERGY STAR label on your furnace; this notes not only that you have a high efficiency furnace, but one that meets safety standards as well.
“So, What’s the Danger?”
There is still, in fact, a potential for a gas-powered furnace to become unsafe. Any appliance that combusts natural gas, after all, can create a safety issue due to leaks of toxic exhaust fumes or from the danger of uncontrolled combustion. In fact, any home that has a connection to a natural gas line can encounter the danger of a carbon monoxide leak. That’s why it’s essential you have CO detectors installed in your home.
Investing in the right Tacoma heating services helps you avoid this risk. For instance, if you’re alerted to the need for furnace repairs, taking care of them right away can ensure that if you do have a problem that can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning or a gas leak, it’s taken care of right away, before you operate your furnace again. Calling for repairs as soon as you detect the need or as soon as you are alerted to the need is vital. Our professionals will be out ASAP to check out your system and make sure it’s operating safely.
Other steps you can take to protect the integrity of your furnace include:
- Arranging for Annual Maintenance: This allows our technicians to thoroughly examine your entire heater, checking for signs of wear and repair needs. We also clean out the system to make sure it can run as smoothly and effectively as possible.
- Changing the Air Filter Regularly: Changing your furnace filter every 1–3 months—depending on its frequency of use—and keeping the area around the cabinet clear of objects, will help your heater perform at its best and keep it safe.
The Cracked Heat Exchanger
The biggest concern any homeowner should have about an aging furnace that needs repairs is in regards to a cracked heat exchanger. This is a clamshell-shaped component that collects hot combustion gas from the furnace.
If the heat exchanger becomes corroded and cracks, then combustion fumes can escape into the air. Again, this is likely to happen in an aging furnace versus a newer one, but this is why we stress how important preventive maintenance is. It may be that you’d be better off with a replacement than a repair, in which case we can help you make an educated decision on your next heater purchase.