As cooler weather signals the approach of winter, it is time for homeowners to make their winter home safety preparations. Not sure where to start? Here are some common winter safety hazards and the precautions you can take to keep your family safe:
CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTION
Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, invisible gas that causes headaches, dizziness, nausea, and confusion. If you breathe it too long, it can be deadly.
Your furnace is one of the main sources of carbon monoxide in your home. Normally, the CO is part of an enclosed system that never releases gas into your air. However, if your heat exchanger cracks, it can release exhaust gasses that contain carbon monoxide.
One of the best ways to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning is to install a CO detector. It will sound an alarm if it detects CO in your home.
Some tips on buying a CO detector:
- Either buy a battery-operated model or one with a battery back-up
- Change the batteries twice a year when you set your clocks forward and back.
Since your furnace only gets used a few months out of the year, many homeowners assume it won't need much maintenance between uses. The truth is, your furnace's idle times can lead to more need for an inspection and tune-up, not less. When moving parts sit still, they often don't get the lubrication that lets them operate smoothly. Electrical connections and gas lines can all work loose with the shifting of your house.
A maintenance check-up can catch these potential hazards as well as other problems that might keep your furnace from operating as it should. The HVAC technician will typically check to make sure the electrical, gas, and mechanical components of your furnace are working safely and efficiently. He'll check the heat exchanger for cracks and look for any other issues that might require repairs.
Want to learn more about winter home safety in your South Bay Peninsula and Santa Cruz area home? Visit our website for in-depth information on most HVAC topics, or just give us a call at (408) 868-5500.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the South Bay Peninsula and Santa Cruz areas of California about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).