Find Out More About Furnace Safety

Furnace Safety in Charlotte, NC

When you’re looking for a way to ensure that your entire house is a little bit safer, you should look into what kinds of furnace safety tips you can implement. There are several things that you should be doing on a regular basis to ensure that your furnace is running in peak condition, and some of the tips are also good for safety. But there are some details that you might not have even thought about even if you do other kinds of maintenance on your furnace to keep it running well. These are some of the top tips that you can incorporate into your routine to keep your air conditioner running well and running safely for a long time to come.

Tell the Kids to Stay Away

If you’re one of the many homeowners in the area who has children, you should know that children are often curious about how a furnace works. In fact, if you’ve never explained to your children what a furnace does, they might not even know why it’s there. To a child, a furnace might look like the outside of a spaceship or a robot. Children have great imaginations, so you need to tell them why they should play elsewhere. It’s possible for children to get burnt or even worse. You should also tell children to keep their toys a certain distance away from the furnace. Additionally, children who are too young to follow directions consistently should never be left alone in the room with the furnace.

Change the Filter

When you’re looking for ways to improve the efficiency of your furnace while also making it safer, make sure that you’re changing your HVAC filter on a regular basis, usually every three months or whatever the manufacturer’s recommendations on it indicate. When your filter is dirty, it’s more difficult for the furnace to filter the air, which raises heating costs and allows contaminants to stay in the air in your home. It also makes it more likely that you’ll have a furnace fire.

Get Another Home Smoke Detector

If you want to make sure that your home is very safe, get a smoke detector for the room where you have your furnace. Most people keep a smoke detector by the bedrooms or in the kitchen, but most homes are going to benefit from a smoke detector that’s right near the furnace because a few minutes can be a big difference in the case of a home fire. In fact, it could be the difference between whether or not everyone gets out safely.

Vacuum Around the Furnace

Debris around the furnace can be kindling for a small fire to break out. The pilot light is always lit during the winter months, and even small amounts of debris could be enough to cause a hazard. You can easily use a handheld vacuum or an upright vacuum with the right attachments to clean up any debris that has settled around the furnace.

Store It Somewhere Else

If you have an odd container of chemicals that you’re trying to find a place to store, you might think that a utility closet is a reasonable place. Unfortunately, you really shouldn’t store anything near the furnace and many other pieces of equipment that you’re likely to find in a utility closet. Papers, spare pieces of wood, old rags, and sawdust are just a few of the most common types of materials found near furnaces that could cause the furnace to start on fire. Some common chemicals include paint thinner, paint, gasoline, and ammonia.

Schedule Inspections

If you’re interested in ways to make sure that your home is safer, schedule a furnace inspection every year. During one of these inspections, the technician can tell you why you’re having a particular problem, and they can tell you about any safety concerns that might be going on with your furnace. Additionally, you should keep a log of when your furnace was inspected and what the recommendations were. You can keep this log directly on a clipboard attached to the furnace or in a plastic pouch that’s taped to the furnace.

Test Your Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Carbon monoxide is deadly if you breathe it in for long periods of time, and if you have a leak in the flue, you could expose yourself and your family to it. One of the easiest ways to ensure that the air that you’re breathing is clean and safe is to regularly check your carbon monoxide detectors. Make sure that the batteries are new, too.

Add Some Lighting

Your furnace room should be well lit so that you or our technicians can easily see around when they’re servicing the furnace. An overhead light is preferable, but if you still don’t have enough lighting, a flashlight will work well, too.

Look and Listen for Anything Strange

If you hear noises, such as pops, you might have something wrong with your furnace. Rust spots can also mean that there’s something wrong with your furnace, so you should look for irregularities on and around your furnace so that you can catch problems when they’re small.

Check the Ventilation

A furnace needs proper ventilation to work correctly. If you notice soot or a black color around the furnace, you might have a problem with the ventilation. When there isn’t adequate ventilation, fumes can back up into the house, causing carbon monoxide poisoning in the people inhabiting the house. Some of the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning include faintness, headaches, nausea, and even death.

Make Sure the Flame Is Blue

If the flame is any other color than blue, there’s something wrong with the furnace. Sometimes there’s debris that’s changing the color of the flame, and sometimes there’s something wrong with the mechanical equipment. Either way, you should have a professional tell you what’s wrong with it to keep you and the other inhabitants safe from carbon monoxide poisoning or a potential fire.

Have a Fire Extinguisher

Having a fire extinguisher is one of the safety precautions that most people forget, but there are actually a couple of places where you should keep one handy, and near your furnace is one of the most important places. You should also check to make sure that it’s in working order on a monthly basis. In addition, you should make sure that you and everyone in your household who is physically and mentally capable knows how to use it.

Have an Escape Plan

Make sure that everyone knows what to do in the event of an emergency, including having an escape plan. If you have teenagers that you leave at home sometimes, make sure that they would know what to do if they thought that there was something wrong with the furnace, such as a carbon monoxide leak. A trusted neighbor that they could go to if they needed help with something could be invaluable in an emergency.

When you’re looking for a company to take care of all of your heating and air conditioning repairs, installations, and more, call Integrity Heating & Cooling. Our technicians can give you more safety tips and repair anything that could be a safety hazard. We’ve been providing heating and cooling solutions to the Greater Charlotte area for more than 35 years.

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