Fixing a Blocked Furnace Exhaust Vent

Troubleshooting Tips When You Lose Heat

winter homes in waterford mi

When your furnace unexpectedly stops working during the harsh Waterford Township winters, it’s crucial to address the issue promptly. While various factors can lead to this problem, some, like a blocked furnace exhaust vent, can be examined and potentially resolved by homeowners themselves. 

 In this guide from Just Right Heating and Cooling, we’ll shed light on the common problem of a blocked furnace exhaust vent. We will also offer valuable troubleshooting steps a homeowner can do themselves in trying to restore heat.

blocked furnace exhaust vent

Understanding Furnace Exhaust Vents

A furnace does more than just heat your home. It also generates exhaust gases that need to be safely expelled. Much like how we exhale carbon dioxide, a furnace releases exhaust that must be directed outside to ensure clean indoor air quality. 

The furnace exhaust vent acts as a conduit, allowing these gases to exit your home. Modern high-efficiency heating systems have two pipes – the combustion air intake and the combustion air exhaust pipe.

Signs of a Blocked Exhaust Vent

Detecting signs of a clogged exhaust vent is helpful to maintaining a safe and functional heating system. 

Unusual odors could indicate a blocked vent. If your carbon monoxide detector triggers, turn off your furnace immediately, ensure your family’s safety, and seek emergency repair. 

Frequent furnace shutdowns and restarts, which might occur due to safety mechanisms activating to prevent gas buildup.

Insufficient heating performance, resulting from reduced airflow caused by a clogged exhaust vent.

Common Culprits for Blocked Exhaust Vents

Several factors can lead to a blocked furnace exhaust vent, including:

  • Intrusion of rodents or birds into the vent
  • Accumulation of snow around the vent
  • Gathering of leaves near or within the vent
  • Blockage caused by vent damage or rust

Addressing Deep Snow Issues

Here in the Waterford Township area, snowfall can affect your heating system’s performance. So, it’s essential to be vigilant after a big snowfall. If you experience a loss of heat following heavy snowfall, check your exterior furnace exhaust pipes for blockages. Low-lying vent pipes can be easily obstructed by snow buildup. Clear away the snow around the pipes to ensure proper ventilation.

shovel snow away from furnace exhaust pipes

Safety Measures and DIY Solutions 

Because a clogged exhaust vent poses safety risks, it’s recommended call for professional HVAC technicians, like the experienced heating repair team at Just Right Heating and Cooling

However, here are some steps that homeowners can take themselves:

  • Turn off the furnace if you suspect a blocked or clogged exhaust vent.
  • Remove visible debris, such as snow, leaves, or twigs, from around the exterior pipes.
  • During winter, regularly clear snow and ice accumulation near the exhaust vent. 
  • Install a vent cap or screen designed to prevent debris and animals from entering the exhaust vent.
Just Right Heating & Cooling HVAC van in Waterford, MI

Expert Furnace Exhaust Pipe Service in Oakland County

For thorough inspection and maintenance of your furnace exhaust vent, trust the expertise of Just Right Heating and Cooling. We provide service to communities all across Oakland County

Our skilled technicians are well-versed in every aspect of your home’s HVAC system, ensuring the safe operation of your furnace. If you encounter furnace issues, don’t hesitate to contact us at 248-673-0438 for immediate assistance or schedule a service appointment online.

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