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What No One Tells You about Snow and Your High Efficiency Furnace

Snowstorm + no heat = _________

You can fill in the blank with your own answer to the above equation, but we are guessing your solution won’t be a positive one.

Some people love snow.  Some people hate snow.  But, nobody likes waking up to a freezing cold house in the morning.

If you have found that your furnace has stopped working out of the blue on snow day, it might be because of the snow.  After major snowfalls, your high efficiency is at risk of having problems.

Why Would Snow Cause My Furnace to Stop?

Many furnaces use pipes coming in and out of the chimney for bringing in and venting out air.  However, high efficiency furnaces (90% AFUE and above) have pipes located on the side of the home, fairly low to the ground.  When those pipes get clogged with snow, it can cause the furnace to stop working.

What Should I Do About It?

The good news it that this is usually a very simple problem to fix. If your high efficiency furnace isn’t working after a big snowfall, first check out those intake and exhaust pipes.  They are typically made of PVC and located somewhere on the side on the home.

Are they clogged with snow?  Clear the blockage and see if that helps.  If your heat still isn’t working, call a professional heating company to come help.o

How Can I Prevent My High Efficiency Furnace from Having these Problems?

After a major snowfall, take a look at your furnace’s intake and exhaust pipes right away to ensure there is no snow.  Clear the surrounding area of any snow that could get blown in by wind.

Also, be aware of where you are shoveling or snow blowing the snow–you may inadvertently block up the pipes.  Does someone else shovel or plow your driveway for you?  Alert them to the location of the pipes and ask them to avoid placing snow in front of them as well.

Looking for more help with your home’s heating?  Contact us at FLAME Heating, Cooling, Plumbing, and Electrical!

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