12-12-2013, 10:20 AM
#1
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Richard (geezer) sent this to me and asked that I post it. It is some good information about heating systems and the importance of having them checked.

geezer Wrote:Hi Johnny,
Here is what I found out was slowly killing me. Please post the following where it may be best seen??
~Richard
""
Illness from Furnace problem

Again, it is time to remind / warn folks that there are a lot of pitfalls when heating a home or business during extreme cold.
It is a very good idea to have a furnace repair company come bye and check all the fueled appliances for leakage of gas or their exhaust for traces of CO or other combustion products escaping into the living areas.
I have been having a really bad autumn with lots of allergy attacks. I noticed the sneezing coughing attacks came strongest when the furnace around the corner from my computer fired up. It has been horribly cold this year, and the furnace fired often.
 I called the local plumbing/heating dealer and was kind of brushed off. They had a lot of frozen burst pipes to deal with. After another day, I called again and told them they had rebuilt my boiler and they damn well better get over here to check it out.
 Surprise..the "sniffer" found strong traces of Carbon Monoxide that was just below the level that would trip my in-home fire / CO detector.
 They fixed the condensate trap which had dried out and let combustion gas into the rooms. They also found and fixed other leakages in the combustion area of the unit. (A condensate trap is often a tube from the bottom of the exhaust stack of the heater. It traps the moisture generated by the combustion to prevent rusting out the system. It is supposed to have a bit of water in the loop to prevent exhaust gas from entering the living area. In really cold dry periods that water evaporates and exhaust gas can enter the home through that tube.)
While  in the house they also checked all other combustion, live flame, appliances; water heater, stove, and clothes drier and found them to be safe.
Now, I am getting the weeks of bad air out of my system and hope to recover soon.
There are many types of condensate traps and they vary by manufacturer of the appliance. If you retained your installation manual the type may be explained in that. If you have gas appliances the local utility will often do a checkout for you.
Again, if you are having sinus or allergy problems in your home, the combustion appliances should be checked out.

Some good information here.
Carbon Monoxide explained
Google search for Carbon Monoxide

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 12-12-2013, 10:37 AM
#2
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Thanks for the reminder, Johnny & Richard!

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 12-12-2013, 10:40 AM
#3
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A very good reminder. And it is also a good idea for those who use a wood-burning stove or fireplace to have someone who knows what they're doing (and won't damage the roof, etc.) clean the creosote deposits out of the chimney. I speak from experience in saying that you do not want to experience the excitement of a chimney fire.

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 12-12-2013, 10:53 AM
#4
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Thanks to Richard, Johnny, John, and anyone else who offers tips.

Recently, due to the gas being shut off in my neighborhood, the local gas and electric company sent a man to relight the pilots in my appliances once the gas was turned back on. He took one look at my water heater and almost didn't relight it. Heat was escaping where it shouldn't, the lines were so old they were no longer under code, and the heater was not earthquake bolted to the wall. I told him I would get in touch with my landlord, which I did.

When the plumber came out the next day, he took one look, called my landlord, and two days later I had a brand new water heater. The old one was about 25 years old and I remember when they put it in. I just grew used to the aging sounds it was making over the years and never considered the problems that aging can bring. Luckily, because of an astute San Diego Gas & Electric worker and a great landlord, a major problem was averted.

What Richard wanted posted here is a great wake-up call so, thanks again. Thumbsup

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 12-12-2013, 11:33 AM
#5
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(12-12-2013, 10:40 AM)churchilllafemme Wrote: A very good reminder. And it is also a good idea for those who use a wood-burning stove or fireplace to have someone who knows what they're doing (and won't damage the roof, etc.) clean the creosote deposits out of the chimney. I speak from experience in saying that you do not want to experience the excitement of a chimney fire.

where i live it is obligatory by law to clean the chimney once every year. and not by yourself but a professional chimney sweeper from the fire department.

[Image: zkho8x1.jpg]

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 12-15-2013, 08:28 PM
#6
  • Lradke
  • Senior Member
  • Edmonton, Alberta
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Hey guys! In all seriousness, if you have any questions, etc, on furnaces let me know. I work for the largest furnace service/installation company in my city.    

I'm always willing to help friends out! Smile

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 12-21-2013, 09:03 PM
#7
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"CHECK YOUR FURNACE"

I checked, mine are still there.

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 12-22-2013, 02:18 PM
#8
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I get ours checked every year (furnace) but never thought about the hot water tank. After reading this I think I'll run downstairs and see if all is clean. We have CO and natural gas monitors everywhere, but still ...

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