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Serving the Tri County Area Since 1960


Charter Home Comfort Blog

A Tech Finds a True Horror Tale in the Basement


It’s our goal at Charter Home Comfort to provide our customers with the highest quality service on every job. We stick to our core values and never compromise on quality because we know how important it is, not only for our customers’ comfort, but for their health as well.

Nothing reinforces our dedication to continuing to provide the best HVAC service more than discovering poor work other contractors have done. In today’s installment of “Tales From Our Technicians,” we’re going to look at a serious nightmare situation that one of our techs discovered in a customer’s basement. This isn’t the stuff of horror movies, it’s a real-world danger!

The Tale…

One of our dedicated technicians went to a house to perform regular heating maintenance. The customer had a furnace in the basement, a rather standard set-up. But when the technician arrived, he found he could not even perform the maintenance because the basement had off-the-charts levels of carbon monoxide. The customer even reported that they felt sick every time they went into the basement, and no surprise! Carbon monoxide, a byproduct of natural gas combustion, is lethal in high doses and even in lower amounts causes nausea, headaches, dizziness, and other symptoms similar to the flu. The gas is also colorless, odorless, and tasteless, so people often don’t know what’s happening to them.


A well-maintained and installed furnace won’t pose a carbon monoxide risk because the furnace safely vents out the gas through a chimney. So what was wrong with this furnace that was causing it to flood the basement with toxic gas?

Our technician discovered that another company had installed the wrong sized chimney liner. This made it difficult for the furnace to vent out carbon monoxide, causing some of the gas to flow the wrong direction. But this wasn’t all. The previous company had installed a dryer vent to the furnace and the hot water heater the previous year. This is an astonishing mistake that no professional would ever think of doing. It’s incredibly dangerous—no wonder the customer felt sick when they went into the basement. This could have easily killed them!

Honestly, this story just disgusts us. This family was living with a dangerous situation, a potentially lethal situation, because of a sloppy contractor who took advantage of them with slapdash and shameful work. 

Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who call themselves “contractors” who have no business working with HVAC equipment. For homeowners who aren’t in the HVAC business, it can be hard to detect mistakes like this, especially if they hired someone who claimed they “knew what they were doing.”

We don’t want to see anything like this happen to anyone else. Please carefully vet anyone you hire for HVAC service. Make sure they are licensed professionals, have NATE-certified technicians, and have a history of satisfied customers. A lot more is on the line than comfort!

Contact Charter Home Comfort today to schedule an appointment with professionals who take your safety and comfort seriously. Old fashioned values with tech savvy results!

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