Can My Furnace Explode?

Technician working on a furnace

Your home’s furnace involves a complex combination of electricity, heating oil or natural gas, steam, water, metal parts, and other important components. The furnace, after all, is certainly not a simple appliance and giving your heating system the proper care and attention it deserves can avoid dangerous issues from arising, such as a harmful or deadly explosion, to protect your family and your home.

In other words, yes—your furnace can explode, which is why regular maintenance is so important. Knowing when it’s time for a furnace repair or a furnace replacement can also help to prevent furnace explosion and other risks.

It’s also important to be able to recognize when your furnace needs quick and immediate attention. In this article, our experts from Happy Home Heating & Cooling will share with you some of the warning signs that your furnace may explode, and other deadly risks that come from a faulty furnace, such as a carbon monoxide leak.

Common Warning Signs of Furnace Explosion and Other Risks

While professional, regular maintenance of your furnace is always a must, knowing what to look for when evaluating your home’s unit is one of the best ways to avoid a dangerous situation. Here are some of the most common warning signs of furnace explosions and other deadly risks:

For homeowners with gas furnaces, pay attention to any unexplained and sudden smells of gas inside your home. The smell of gas fumes can be an indication of a fuel leak. In the case that you do smell fumes, get out immediately and don’t try to inspect the situation on your own. It is too dangerous that simply operating an electric appliance or turning on a switch could trigger the explosion. Once you’re out of the house, contact your local fire department and the gas company.

Because your furnace needs to produce high temperatures to keep the house warm, and it involves some sort of fuel to work, the excessive heat combined with the fuel can produce fire in some unfortunate instances. Aside from having it inspected for problems or getting a furnace replacement for your old, worn-out furnace, it is also important to keep gasoline and other combustibles away from your heating systems.

For those with forced hot air heating, it is recommended not to close more than a fifth of the registers (the covers of the air ducts that transport air into a room) when the heat is on. Closing the registers too far can lead to excessive heat buildup in the furnace, which may eventually lead to an explosion.

Most furnaces involve burning fuel to produce heat. Hence, they also generate carbon monoxide, which is a deadly odorless gas. Oil furnaces or any other types of furnaces can sometimes develop cracks, especially when they’re old. These cracks will then allow carbon monoxide to escape into the house instead of being vented out of the house.

In order to avoid the dangers of a carbon monoxide leak, it is important to install a carbon monoxide alarm for each floor of the house. It is recommended to install these alarms away from the kitchen, heating vents, and other appliances that burn fuel.

The Most Effective Way to Prevent Furnace Explosions

If your furnace is already more than 10–15 years old, you are not only at a greater risk of furnace explosion but may also experience lower efficiency. For homeowners with older furnaces, new furnace installation is a good idea and should be at the top of your list of priorities when contemplating home improvement projects.

Happy Home Heating & Cooling provides high-quality furnace replacement and oil furnaces, gas furnaces, and other types of heating systems for homeowners in Cary, North Carolina, and the surrounding areas. Our industry-leading furnace products offer innovative safety features, like automatic shut-off functions in dangerous situations, to prevent explosions and other risks.

Aside from installing new furnaces , our licensed experts can also perform furnace repair and safety evaluations for your home. For more information on furnace safety for your household, or questions about our premium heating and air-conditioning products, give us a call now or fill out our online form to receive a free, in-home, no-obligation pricing estimate.

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