Call Professionals to Deal with a Cracked Heat Exchanger

new-heating-systemWinter is the time of year that your forced-air furnace sees daily activity, for obvious reasons. And if you have an older furnace, you need to keep a close watch on it to see if it suffers any serious damage. In particular, look for a cracked heat exchanger, which usually results in a complete shutdown of the system. The good news there is that it’s easy to spot the problem. The bad news is that it can often mean something serious, such as a cracked heat exchanger. In such circumstances, it’s vital that you call a furnace repair service immediately.

What Is a Heat Exchanger?

A heat exchanger is one of the most vital parts of your system: transferring heat from the burners to the air for distribution to your home. Burners generate a lot of heat, but they can’t always move that heat to the air in an efficient manner. That’s where the heat exchanger comes in. It’s essentially just a piece of shaped metal sitting between the burners and the air they need to heat. It can transfer the heat much more effectively, and the heated air can then be blown into your home with a fan. The shaping of the heat exchanger also channels potentially toxic gasses — a byproduct of the heating process — safely out of your home via a venting pipe.

Because there are no moving parts, a heat exchanger is very durable. But over the years, the constant heating and cooling of the metal can take its toll. Eventually, cracks may form in the heat exchanger due to the stress. In most modern furnaces, safety features will prevent the system from turning on: alerting you to the problem and preventing potentially toxic gas from entering the home. If your furnace doesn’t have such a feature, you should seriously consider installing some manner of leak detector nearby.

What to Do If Your Heat Exchanger Is Cracked

Only a trained technician can successfully diagnose a problem like a cracked heat exchanger, which is why you should always turn off your system — even if it doesn’t operate when you turn it on — and call in a professional the moment you detect any problems. If you suspect that your heat exchanger is cracked, the best step is to consult your warranty to see whether it is still in effect. If it is, you may be able to replace the heat exchanger for no cost beyond the labor required to do so, or even replace the system with a new one depending upon the specifics.

If the warranty has expired on the unit, however, you’re probably looking at replacing the entire furnace with a new one. Your technician can examine the damage and make recommendations based on your specific circumstances. A cracked heat exchanger is a serious problem regardless, and should always be treated as such.

For quality furnace repair and replacement services throughout the Portland, OR area, call the friendly time at Clean Air Act, Inc. today to schedule an appointment!

Tags: , ,

Comments are closed.