Getting a new furnace can be exciting. Your home will likely heat more evenly, you don't have to be as concerned about breakdowns, and your energy bills will probably go down, too. But one thing you should pay renewed attention to when you get a new furnace is your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Even the best HVAC technician occasionally makes mistakes, so there's a chance that ventilation leaks or furnace manufacturing errors could cause carbon monoxide to build up in your home once you start using your new furnace. Here are four ways to guard against carbon monoxide poisoning when you have a new furnace.
Install a carbon monoxide detector.
Even if you have a carbon monoxide detector already, now is a good time to verify that it is working and properly located. Change the battery. Also, check the date on the back – most CO detectors have a date after which they are not guaranteed to be functional. Experts recommend installing the CO detector near your sleeping area. This way, if it goes off at night, you have a greater chance of actually hearing it.
Know the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide poisoning can be deadly. Often, when people die from carbon monoxide poisoning, it is because they failed to recognize the earlier signs of poisoning. If you or a family member develop any of the following symptoms, especially during the first few weeks with your new furnace, find somewhere else to stay until a HVAC technician from a company like Triad Heating & Cooling Inc can come look over your system:
- Headaches that get worse when you're at home
- Confusion and mental fog
- Fatigue or exhaustion
- Nausea, especially when at home
Don't tweak the furnace yourself.
If you feel that something needs to be adjusted, it can be tempting to just do it yourself. But, without proper training, it's far too easy to make a mistake that could allow exhaust fumes containing CO to leak into your home. If you think your furnace or the associated vent system need adjustments, call your HVAC technician.
Don't ignore suspicious bangs and rattling.
When you're getting used to a new furnace, you won't initially know what is normal and what is not in terms of noises and function. In most cases, though, your furnace should not be making any noises aside from a clicking noise when it switches on and off. If it is, give your HVAC technician a call so that if there is something wrong, you can have it repaired before any carbon monoxide leaks result. Don't assume that since the furnace is new, there cannot possibly be anything wrong with it. Occasionally, errors are made during assembly – a part might be loose or missing.
A new furnace does not automatically protect you from CO poisoning. But, if you follow the tips above, you can protect yourself.