Furnace Has a Strange Odor

If there is a strange stench coming from your gas furnace, be very careful, as this can be a dangerous gas leak. If you suspect this is the case, here are some of our suggestions as well as recommendations from the American Gas Association.

What to Do if You Suspect a Gas Leak

  • Do not flip the lights on, as these can cause a spark and fire
  • Do not switch anything motorized or electrical on or off
  • Do not turn on your cell phone and do not send a text
  • Do not light a match
  • Quickly open the windows of your house to allow ventilation
  • Leave the house immediately
  • Call the gas company from outside your home or ask a neighbor to call them
  • To be on the safe side, we recommend you call 911 as soon as you are at least 25 feet away from your home

Besides causing a fire, a smelly gas scent from your gas or oil furnace may indicate that there is a carbon monoxide leak, which can also be deadly if inhaled in excessive amounts. This is why gas leaks should be resolved with urgency.

More About Carbon Monoxide and Furnaces

Both oil and gas furnaces rely on their corresponding fuel and combustion—or fuel burning—to operate. Whether your furnace is gas-fueled or oil-fueled, both fuels have a chemical make-up that includes carbon along with other elements. When improper combustion occurs in your furnace, the byproduct is carbon monoxide. All furnaces have a certain degree of improper combustion no matter how new or old they are. This is why properly venting the carbon monoxide and other gases is so important. The way this is done is through proper ventilation either through a flue, or other venting tubes that channel the unwanted gases to the outdoor environment and away from your home.

How to Prevent Furnace Gas Leaks

To keep your furnace from dangerous carbon monoxide leaks or any gas leaks, the best thing you can do is have it serviced at the very least once a year before the cold season gets here. During a routine furnace maintenance, your technician will use innovative solutions to verify that your furnace is free of gas leaks and vented properly. This is absolutely crucial for the care of your heating equipment, or any gas-fueled appliances in your home. If carbon monoxide and other harmful gases remain in your living areas, these will pose a serious threat to your health and life. To prevent gas leak emergencies, contact a furnace expert who will perform a gas leak test in your home.

For help finding a furnace repairman, call us at 866-97-ACPRO, or search our contractor listings.