Furnace Problems That Require Professional Intervention
Although DIY diagnosis and service of your furnace can save you money, some furnace malfunctions (mostly technical or dangerous ones) are best handled by professional technicians. Below are some of these malfunctions.
Gas leakage is bad for more than one reason. For one, you might develop health problems if you breathe in air contaminated by the gas. Secondly, you will be wasting gas since you will be paying for gas you don't use. Also, your furnace won't be getting adequate fuel, so your furnace efficiency will suffer, and your house might be colder than it should be. Lastly, releasing raw gas into the atmosphere is also bad for the environment.
Several things can cause your heating system to leak gas. For example, a cracked heat exchanger can lead to gas leakage, damaged fuel lines can lead to gas leakage, and back drafting can also lead to gas leakage.
Stop using your furnace, don't operate electrical or electronic devices, shut off the main gas supply, and put out naked flames if you suspect a gas leak. After that, contact the emergency services to diagnose and plug the leak before further problems occur.
Your gas furnace may run on gas, but it requires electricity for some of its function. For example, the furnace may require electricity to ignite the fuel, control the gas valve, drive the motors, and keep the thermostat working.
Furnace electrical problems, and indeed all electrical problems, are dangerous for three main reasons. First, they can trigger electrical shock or even electrocution. Secondly, they can trigger electrical fires that can cause serious damage. Lastly, not many people understand electricity, and it is easy to make a mistake that can lead to further damage.
Carbon Monoxide Leak
A gas furnace combusts fuel to produce heat, and carbon monoxide is one of the byproducts of this combustion. Unfortunately, the gas is poisonous to human beings; it can lead to loss of consciousness or even death without prompt intervention.
During normal furnace operations, the carbon monoxide is channeled out of the flue and into the atmosphere. However, furnace malfunctions can let the gas escape into your house before it is channeled out of the house. Causes of carbon monoxide leakage include cracked heat exchange, blocked flue, or improper venting of the furnace, among other things.
The above are just a few examples of furnace problems that require professional input. The rule of thumb is to limit your DIY furnace repair endeavors to issues that your skill and experience level can handle without complications.