Furnace repair contractor Chicago 1-8-2010 The snow has come and gone for the moment. The frigid temperatures according to the newscasters are to follow in the next couple of days. One of the most common problems we see with furnaces and boilers during the snow and then the frigid cold is the flue pipe freezing up.
The flue pipe rarely freezes completely, but what does happen is that the moisture that is created from the warm flue gases hitting the cold outside temperature`s creates condensation in the flue pipe then drains back down to the furnace or boiler causing pressure switch problems as well as an abundance of water backing up in the inducer motor which causes flash codes of three blinks, most manufactures use the same codes. Sometimes the water in the inducer motor also has to do with improper drain line installations as well as clogged drains from the secondary heat exchanger on high efficient furnaces or boilers.
Another problem with high snow and frigid weather is the PVC flue pipe that exits the side of your structure or home,on occasions when the PVC pipe was not raised 2 feet above ground level, snow drifts can block the Pvc flue pipe causing pressure switch problems as well. You can`t stop Mother Nature but you can be aware of issues due to Mother Nature concerning your high efficient furnace.
Another problem we see when the weather is snowy and rigidly cold is gas meter regulators that clog up and decrease the flow of natural gas supplied to your structure or home. This is not real common but we see this problem 4 or 5 times a year and usually peoples gas or nicor gas takes care or the problem if our service technicians cannot. We can only clear snow or ice away from the regulator and clean the venting screen otherwise the gas meter belongs to the gas companies and they must do all the other repairs beyond our control.
In closing if you are having flash codes of three on your furnace look at the obvious problems mentioned above before condemning the furnace. It can be confusing, but correctable.
One other problem that can cause pressure switch problems besides a defective pressure switch is a crack or cracks in the heat exchanger, we will leave that for a different blog.
In closing We from Around The Town Heating say have a safe and prosperous New year and pay attention to the obvious first by Calling Around The Town Heating and Cooling for all your HVAC needs. 312-243-9896 or 708-560-5410 Thanks Big Ed!