Your HVAC system has a lot of components. With so many components, there's potential for safety hazards. Luckily, most of these hazards are preventable. The precautions are easy to take.
The Simple Things
- Install a carbon monoxide detector. We cannot stress the importance of this enough. Make sure to change the batteries regularly. Carbon monoxide is known as the "silent killer" because you can't see or smell the gas.
- Block children and animals from accessing areas where you HVAC system components are. There are many sharp parts all over the system. You may find that there are certain safety switches in place, but every once in a while those can fail too.
- Have your system maintained by a licensed HVAC technician. Part of a yearly check is to make sure those safety switches are working properly. They check gas lines, electrical connections and anything else that could potentially be a hazard.
- Change your filter monthly. This is important for many reasons. One of the most important is it creates and easy path for the air to flow through. The less resistance, the better.
The Less Known Things
Aside from the obvious, having a carbon monoxide detector is so important. Furnaces contain a "heat exchanger." Over time, sometimes these can get microscopic cracks (and sometimes larger cracks!) These cracks allow carbon monoxide to seep out. This isn't necessarily something you can see. Due to the fact that you may not be able to see your heat exchanger, your carbon monoxide is literally your only way of knowing if there's a problem.
If your carbon monoxide detector does go off, turn your HVAC system off and vacate the house immediately. If you have pets, take them with you. If you aren't feeling drowsy, feverish or have a headache, you can open windows to vent your home. From there, give us a call and let us know what's going on. We'll get a technician out to your home promptly to assess the situation. Do not sleep in your home until you've informed by a professional that the issue has been rectified.
Frayed wires are a problem. If you notice frayed wires that are connected to your HVAC system, turn the system off and call us. These pose a fire hazard.