Many Lethbridge homeowners prepare for winter by getting their furnace checked every fall. Some feel it’s unnecessary. When you consider that your furnace houses the largest natural gas flame in your house, simply from a safety perspective, it’s really not something to overlook. More information on furnace check ups is in this video.
My Service Company specializes in Lethbridge furnace check ups, furnace repairs, and furnace replacements. Please call us 03-327-9349 and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.
Is your furnace a furnace-suarus? My Service Company is looking for the oldest prehistoric furnace from the stone age in the Lethbridge area. When we find it, we’ll replace it with an energy efficient Maytag furnace, FREE!
This contest ends February 2
8, so enter your old beast as soon as possible. Even if you don’t win the free furnace, it’s still worth your while to enter. We’re giving every entrant a $200 gift certificate, as well as entering you in a draw for other fantastic prizes. You really can’t lose!
We often hear that people are apprehensive to change their old furnace mid winter, especially when we’re in the middle of a really cold spell. That’s a fair concern. So we asked one of our recent customers if she could describe her experience of a January furnace change. Here’s what she wrote…
“I really didn’t want to wait any longer. That old furnace was just using too much gas. The guys at My Service Company told me they would have heat on the same day, and that’s exactly what they did. Even at -20, the house only cooled a little. I had to put a sweater on, but that’s about all. The heat was back on before I even had dinner ready and my new Maytag furnace is quiet, warm and I can’t wait to see my next gas bill!”
When you’re changing your furnace mid-winter, here are a couple of things to do to get ready for the big day:
1. Pre-warm the house a little. We’ll arrive at 8:30am sharp and start tearing out your old furnace right away. So crank it up a little before we arrive and that will overheat your home a bit. You’ll appreciate the extra heat.
2. Have the furnace room and surrounding area tidied up. We can work more efficiently if the work space is free and clear of clutter. Furnace rooms are magnetic to storage items. If we have to spend a few hours clearing the workspace, that will cut into your heat-on time.
3. Don’t worry about it! The worst that ever happens is that your home will cool down a few degrees. You’re in absolutely no danger of the pipes freezing. The only thing you might notice is that, like our customer who wrote about her experience, you might need to put on a sweater or some wooly socks.
So, if your old furnace needs to be replaced, don’t worry about the season. We install new Maytag furnaces all year long, and there is no such thing as a day that is too cold to get rid of those high gas bills and expensive repairs.
Filed under: Energy Saving, Furnaces, Heating, Hot Water Heaters, Tankless Heaters
If you have a high efficiency furnace or tankless water heater, chances are you have a vent pipe protruding from the side of your home that looks something like this. If so, be careful of the snow accumulation around this pipe. Not only does it discharge exhaust gases out of the furnace, but it also draws in outside air for combustion. If it get blocked by snow, it’s going to starve the appliance. You’re not likely to get harmed if this happens because these furnaces and water heaters have built in safety protection. You will, however, have an appliance that is not working! So, before calling your favourite plumbing and heating company, check to see that this thing isn’t blocked! You’ll save yourself some money!
Every homeowner should take the time to educate themselves on the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s often read about, used a fear tactic by contractors, and mostly misunderstood. This post from the Sun describes what happened to a work crew using machinery with inadequate ventilation. This can and does happen in finished homes as well, and the problem is that the gas is colourless and odourless.
Three patients were taken from a home under construction in the Hamptons after likely carbon monoxide poisoning.
Emergency crews found four individuals in the home suffering effects from the potentially deadly gas Friday afternoon.
Fire spokesman Brian McAsey said levels in the home on Hamptons View N.W. were as high as 250 parts per million (ppm.)
To put it in to perspective he said fire crews typically started evacuating — especially pregnant women and children who are more vulnerable to CO poisoning — when levels reach 12-1/2 ppm.
“At 25 parts per million we start evacuation of the general public and at 35 everyone is out,” he said.
Once levels reach beyond that people can start fainting, slipping in an out of consciousness and extend exposure to high levels can be deadly.
McAsey said the source is believed to be a machine running in the basement, which was being tiled and wasn’t properly ventilated.
Someone else in the home called emergency crews.
EMS spokesman Adam Loria said three patient were transported in stable but non life-threatning condition to hospital.
A fourth patient declined treatment.
Carbon monoxide a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas that can cause illness or even death.
Any fuel-burning appliance can produce carbon monoxide if it is not installed, used, vented and maintained properly.
Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, nausea, confusion and loss of coordination or judgment.
Carbon monoxide detectors are advised in all homes and if poisoning is expected people and pets should leave the building and call 911.
What you need to do:
1. Get a CO detector in your home. They range in price from $20 to $100+. Don’t buy the cheapest ones. They work, but they often end up causing false alarms and need to be replaced more frequently. If you have one, check it today and replace batteries every year!
2. Have your gas appliances checked annually. Have a qualified technician check your furnace and water heater. If you haven’t had your appliances checked, do it now!
3. Know what to do. Get clear on what to do when your detector goes off. More information found here.
The cold weather is on its way and for Lethbridge and Southern Alberta homes, that means your furnace is about to get a work out. If you’re furnace stops working this winter, there are a couple of very important things you can do yourself before calling out a furnace service technician.
1. Check to see that the breaker is on that serves the furnace. Check you electrical panel and if you see any breakers that are off or tripped, see if they are serving your furnace.
2. Check to see that the power switch is on. Somewhere near your furnace, usually high on a wall, or even at the ceiling there will be a light switch designed to serve as a shutoff for your furnace. Make sure it’s on!
3. Is the thermostat set correctly? Your thermostat may have a “Heat/Cool/Off” switch. Make sure it’s set to Heat. Also make sure that the temperature is set above room temperature (yes, we have to say it, we’ve seen it before!)
4. Is the filter clean? There is nothing worse than calling a technician to your home in the middle of the night to find out your filter is plugged. In the winter months, it’s best to check your filter once every month.
These are the basic tests you can do yourself on your furnace. Doing much more than that requires a certain amount of expertise and is best left to a trained pro. Of course, having your furnace checked annually is the best way to avoid winter breakdowns.
There are many things to consider when replacing a furnace in your home. A few of the key factors to consider are as follows:
- The Product. When you choose a brand, you must consider their history, their warranties, and their ability to stand behind their claims. There are many brands to choose from. Be careful of products that are brand new to the market from companies you’ve never heard of.
- The Company. The installation practices of a company can make or break a product, no matter how good that product
might be. There are plenty of stories of products that have failed because of untrained, inexperienced installation practices. Get photos, videos and testimonials from your contractor. Make sure they can stand behind their work.
- The Solution. Do you need ‘top of the line’? Two stage? Variable Speed? What efficiency should you expect? All of these questions must be answered by the estimator or consultant that comes to prepare a proposal for your project. Furnaces are not a one-size-fits-all product. Each installation must be customized to both the home that it’s in and the people that will be using it. Make sure your estimator asks a lot of questions and customizes a solution for you.
- The Timing. Furnaces tend to have an effective life of 15-25 years, depending on a variety of factors. That’s only one aspect of timing, though. Can a furnace be changed in the dead of winter? Most of the time, yes. But that tends to be a bit more difficult and inconvenient than planning for a replacement in early fall. A good company will make sure to have crew availability in September and October to be able to take care of proactive customers needs.
- The Price. Very few people believe that the cheapest is always the best. In fact, usually a really low price serves as a warning sign to many consumers. At the same time, you don’t want to shop around and look for the most expensive company out there. If you follow the guidelines above, you’ll end up with a company and product that is priced competitively, and has a good chance of long term survival which is important for you, the homeowner.
One factor that is rarely considered is the opinion of service technicians. The opinion of a seasoned service technician would bear a lot of weight in the decision making process. Fortunately, there is a website that rates products based on the opinion of service technicians.
My Service Company wants you to feel comfortable with your furnace purchase, even if that means you’re not buying from us. We’re so confident in our people and our products that we will gladly help you make comparisons to other brands available to you. You can book a free in-home, NO PRESSURE estimate, or call 403-327-9349 to speak with us and gather further information.