A Crack in the Furnace Heat Exchanger Can Mean Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Eldorado, NV

As we are beginning our winter, we are faced with what is a unique requirement for Vegas Valley residents, staying warm. Though the prudent thing to was have our heating equipment checked out in the last month or two, if you are faced with cold nights you will appreciate the proper operation of your heating equipment. Those with heat pumps have little to worry about as heat pumps that are chugging away to cool us will probably reverse the loop cycle to provide heat. But many of us have gas fired heating. Natural gas is a clean burning fuel, but still will produce carbon dioxide and some carbon monoxide if the combustion is not thorough and clean. The latter is toxic, while carbon dioxide in high enough concentrations is decidedly unhealthy as well.

Furnace Heat Exchanger

The heating system must separate the combustion, potentially toxic exhaust gasses from the interior air. This is accomplished via a heat exchanger. The heat exchanger is a series of tubes and chambers that vents hot combustion gases towards the flu and allows interior air to circulate around the tubes and then injecting and circulating the warm air to the interior of the home.
The problem is that the heat exchanger is metal, subject to continuous expansion and contraction due to heating and cooling cycles and is exposed to corrosive hot exhaust gases. Heat serves to increase chemical reactions, include oxidation of metal, known as rust. The continuous expansion on contraction of the heating and cooling cycle induces metal fatigue into the material of the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger is a tough piece of equipment, but as with all things mechanical it can fail, usually through cracking form metal fatigue. This allow for the leaking of toxic exhaust gases into the interior air. Most heat exchangers will go the distance, designed to last 10 to 20 years. A carbon monoxide test can be inconclusive of heat exchanger failure. CO if present in natural gas combustion is not a natural biproduct, but indicative of uneven or incomplete combustion. Infrared monitors are used to detect cracks. Two choices face the homeowner. Either replace the heat exchanger or the furnace. If the furnace is out of warranty a full replacement maybe preferable. Newer technology is providing better and more efficient furnaces as it has with cooling technologies. As the heat exchanger is a major component of the furnace a lot of material needs to be removed to get at the exchanger, so the labor burden is relatively high. The majority of non-electrical heat in our region is provided by the combustion of natural gas. It is fact that direct combustion of hydrocarbon fuels is the most efficient means to provide heat for the home, water and clothes dryers. The most popular and abundant fuel available in the Las Vegas area is natural gas. The burners must also be inspected to make sure the orifices are clean for even burning, the ignition system is working properly as well as the safety control devices such as the flame sensors, pressure switches and ignitors.

Furnace Heating Installation, Replacement, Repairs, Tune Ups & More in Summerlin, North LV, Henderson, Enterprise, Paradise, Sunrise Manor, Spring Valley, Aliante, Anthem, Desert Shores, Eldorado, Green Valley Ranch, Inspirada, Mountain’s Edge, Peccole Ranch, Providence, Rhodes Ranch, Seven Hills, Silverado Ranch, The Lakes, Tuscany Village & Las Vegas Nevada

Change the filters regularly and keep the blower parts lubricated. Many of these comprise the checks and procedures of furnace maintenance and any problems should be caught and remedied at that time. Air Supply Heating and Air Conditioning can handle all your HVAC needs. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

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