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Can Your Gas Furnace Become Dangerous? Yes, And Here Are Several Problems to Watch For

We get some questions from customers about safety as it relates to a gas furnace. While modern furnaces are made with a lot of safety mechanisms in place, they are not without risks. Any appliances that use electricity and gas do come with some risk factors.

The best way to mitigate your risks is by staying ahead of furnace repair in Sterling Heights, MI. Give our team a call any time you think something is wrong with your gas furnace. You can keep reading to learn about common furnace problems that we see and the signs of each one. 

Gas Furnace Ventilation

One of the most important factors in keeping your gas furnace safe to operate is ventilation. There is a ventilation pipe that runs outside of your home to release carbon monoxide and exhaust fumes so they don’t get trapped in your furnace and mixed with clean air. 

If the vent outside is blocked for any reason it can pose risks for your furnace by trapping harmful fumes inside of the system. With nowhere else to go, these fumes can mix in with clean air to release into your home or negatively affect gas furnace operation.

Gas Leaks

It’s also important to pay attention to potential gas leaks. Some gas service providers add an odor (called mercaptan) to the natural gas so it is easier to identify a leak. Otherwise, gas does not have an odor and so leaks aren’t easily detected. You can ask your gas service provider whether or not your gas supply has an odor added to it. 

Either way, it’s a good idea to install carbon monoxide detectors that can alert you to a gas leak. In addition to posing fire hazards around your home, gas leaks are also terrible for your health and can make you or your family members very sick. Carbon monoxide fumes can even be fatal. 

Electrical Issues

When you think of dangers related to a gas furnace, you probably don’t consider electricity. But gas furnaces also require electricity for operation. If the electrical connections are not all secure, they can create dangerous conditions. For example, if any electrical connection is producing sparks or causing electrical shorts, this is a potential fire hazard—especially when you add gas into the mixture.

Dust and Dirt

You may not think that a dirty furnace is a hazard, but it really is. This is especially true when you have a gas furnace. Dust and dirt can build up and cause fire hazards and the potential for overheating. It is important to turn your furnace off completely and allow it to cool down once per month so that you can wipe down the inside of the system and clean away any dust and dirt buildup. 

It is also important to vacuum and dust diligently during the winter season to reduce the number of particles that make it into your gas furnace to begin with. In addition to elevating safety, reducing dust buildup can also make your heater more efficient. 

Contact Charter Home Comfort today to schedule an appointment with our professionals for gas furnace service. Old fashioned values with tech savvy results! 

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