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Cracked Heat Exchanger? – Be On The Lookout For Any of These Signs

home gas furnace

Cracked Heat Exchanger?

A damaged heat exchanger on a gas furnace should never be ignored. You and your family may be at risk by virtue of being exposed to hazardous gases leaking from a cracked heat exchanger. Simply looking at your heat exchanger is not enough for you to identify the signs of cracking. We recommend annual maintenance to check for problems before they become hazardous.  In addition we also recommend that you immediately contact your furnace service provider if you spot any of the following signs.

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Be On The Lookout For Any of These Signs

Weird Odours

It is easy to pick up the smell of odors that resemble the smell of formaldehyde emanating from broken heat exchangers. In human beings, exposure to these odors can cause various issues including headaches. Schedule an immediate furnace inspection by a qualified technician once you pick up on any formaldehyde smell.

Traces of Soot

A good sign indicating a problem in the combustion process within your heating system is a buildup of black carbon in the inner surface of the furnace. A cracked heat exchanger or issues with the burner adjustment may cause combustion problems which in turn lead to an accumulation of soot. On newer high efficiency sealed combustion furnaces, the combustion chamber may be sealed so you won’t be able to see if there is soot. Another reason to have a professional check it annually.

Significant Wear and Tear In Other Parts Of The Furnace

Internal parts of the furnace are likely starting to wear out if the external components of the same system start showing considerable signs of wear, cracking and corrosion among others, as well. Since these components expand and contract as the system heats up and cools down, the formation of stress cracks is quite common. Fumes that give off moisture and chloride coming from other sources may also result in the onset of corrosion.

Flame Colour Changes

A constant blue flame is characteristic of a properly functioning gas furnace. However, you might have a crack in your heat exchanger or an accumulation of dirt in the burner if you see a flickering flame that has turned yellow or white in color. A good indicator of a crack in the heat exchanger is a flickering or bending in the flame whenever you switch the fan on.

Additional Signs to Look Out For

You may get flu like symptoms and/or headaches when exposed to combustion gases emanating from a cracked heat exchanger. Disorientation, drowsiness, nausea and nose and eye irritation are also great signs of exposure to carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide and other combustion pollutants. Try to find out whether these symptoms, if experienced by you or any other occupant of your home, disappear when they go outdoors. Immediately schedule a check of your home’s air quality if this happens to be the case.

Install a CO Detector

In many area’s, having working CO detectors in your home is the law. Make sure your detectors are not older than 5 years and test them regularly.

In Gananoque, Kingston, and surrounding areas, our technicians are on hand 24/7 to diagnose any issues you may be experiencing with your home heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.

Contact us today!

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