What Happens to Your Furnace Chimney in the Summer Can Create a CO Hazard in the Late Fall

This summer, the last thing on your mind is your home’s furnace or its exhaust pipe or chimney. However, it’s during the summer when the pipe can become clogged by bird’s nests and other debris, or by roofers who unknowingly damage the roof cap while re roofing,  creating an eventual carbon monoxide or CO hazard.Once the cold weather switches to spring, we begin to see a whole rash of creatures that have been keeping a low profile. Whether your area is prone to squirrels, raccoons, birds, or even a new roof that makes the flue prone to damage by roofers or all of the above, it’s important to realize that many things can create a hazardous situation. When talking about critter type of damage, your furnace exhaust pipe or chimney might seem like an ideal spot taking shelter and/or building a nest. This can leave behind debris – bird’s nests, droppings, etc. – that will clog the chimney. Then when the weather gets cold again and you turn on the furnace, the toxic exhaust will back up and create a serious CO hazard inside your home.

This summer, call a trusted professional who can inspect the furnace chimney for you and make sure it’s clear. Summer is often a good time to do this, not only so you’re ready for the winter months, but because this is the “slow season” for such services, which means you should be able to get the service for a reasonable price. Then in the late fall before the heating season starts, your technician can take a look at the exhaust pipes to make sure all’s clear, as part of the pre-season tuneup.

It’s also a good idea to invest in a few carbon monoxide detectors around your home. These units will alert you to any CO leaks, to keep your mind at ease. The detectors should be placed on each floor of your home. Be sure to place one within 10 feet of the main sleeping area, and avoid placing them too close to fuel-burning appliances, which could skew the sensors.

If you need further expert advice about potential CO hazards in your Kansas City area home, or have general home comfort questions, please contact the professionals at Overland Park Heating & Cooling, Inc. We’ve been serving Greater Kansas City area since 1983.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

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