If you have a high-efficiency furnace system, you’re positioned to get ideal energy savings and home comfort. However, because these systems operate differently than lower-efficiency systems, high-efficiency furnaces require specialized venting. Chimney venting is generally not cost-affordable, nor suitable, due to the extra condensation these systems produce, which will freeze in the chimney, and cause it to expand. So, your system should be side-wall vented to bypass this problem.
However, side vents can also lead to condensation problems, but they’re generally easily avoidable if you know what to do.
- Keep an eye on condensation on the outside of your home. It’s common for ice to build up on the outdoor portion of the vent, as the venting system removes combusted air along with condensation.
- Outdoors, the vented portion on the side of your home has a screen on it to protect the vent. However, in winter, the presence of this screen can lead to the formation of ice. That’s because as the condensation moves through the vent, it can get caught up on the screen, which creates a barrier for the further movement of moisture, causing more and more ice to build up. Remove the screen, but remember to put it back on when summer comes around.
- With a big snowfall, it’s possible for snow to gather around the vent, which will generally be positioned relatively low on the home’s outer wall. Keep a close watch over the amount of snow that builds up here in order to prevent snow buildup from blocking the vent.
While this may seem like a trivial task, it’s of utmost importance to your family’s safety. If this vent becomes completely blocked, it will increase the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, as the vented air will get pushed back into the home.
Protect your home from a completely avoidable problem with high-efficiency furnace venting. For help with venting problems or heating concerns, contact Arpi’s Industries – serving Greater Calgary-area homeowners for almost 50 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about furnace venting and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.