“Will My Furnace Ever Freeze Up?”
GRmetro Heating and Cooling is a locally owned and operated HVAC company serving homeowners throughout Grand Rapids, Michigan and the surrounding areas.
That’s a very good question, and if the answer were a simple “yes” or “no” then we wouldn’t write a blog that centers around it.
Since the answer is a bit more complicated than just “no,” we’re going to go into detail about one often overlooked part of a furnace’s operation, and why you might always want to defer to an expert when investing in central heating repair in Kentwood, MI.
Furnaces need some amount of warmth to operate correctly, and your basement also requires a bit of warmth in order for it not to be a burden to your house. Finished or unfinished, basements are always going to be cooler than the upper stories of a home, but they shouldn’t be freezing cold or below that. A basement that’s that frigid, while a furnace operates down there, is usually a sign that something is wrong.
No, A Furnace Shouldn’t Freeze Up
Let’s start off with a strong answer for those who don’t have all the time in the world. No, your furnace will not freeze up if it’s cold outside. These systems are designed to operate in cold climates, especially gas furnaces, since they can create a flame in the same way that a wood fireplace would. Furnaces burn fuel, and it has to be exceptionally cold inside your house to stop that from happening.
However, what if your basement gets too cold while the furnace is operating? It sends up all the heat it produces to the rooms of your home, so what about the room where the furnace is working? And, to make things worse, if the thermostat is set low and the furnace doesn’t turn on, can your basement reach cold temperatures that freeze up the system?
The answer is no, but the solution is quite surprising.
A Quick Little Expert Trick
Expert furnace technicians will sometimes leave a gap in the outgoing air duct leading away from the furnace. This isn’t an error and it’s not due to some technical problem, it’s actually a solution to the problem we just mentioned.
When the furnace turns on, some heat will leak out of the air ducts, but in this case that’s a good thing. As a slight amount of heat leaks out, it will actually warm your basement or crawlspace just enough to keep it above freezing and the perfect temperature for the furnace to function efficiently.
DIY Repairs Can Be a Bad Idea in This Case
Now, imagine some of the things that could go wrong if you decided to try and fix your furnace yourself. Even if you managed to scrape by making all of the right repairs after hours and hours of learning how to do it, you might end up closing up that small intentional gap and allowing your basement to get extremely cold and almost unusable for the foreseeable future.
Take this as a tip to always trust a professional for your next job–you never know what other tricks they might have up their sleeves.
For help with your furnace system or other central heating unit, contact GRmetro Heating and Cooling Inc.