A red-tag furnace is a scenario no homeowner wants to encounter. Keeping up with maintenance will help you to avoid this situation, but if your system is ever red tagged, here’s what you need to know:
What is a red-tagged furnace?
When a furnace is “red tagged” the system is essentially condemned, no longer able to operate safely. In fact, your heating technician or gas inspector is required to shut the system down due to carbon monoxide hazards. Because your home’s gas connection will be capped off, you have no other option except to address the situation—quickly, particularly if it occurs during winter.
What are your options?
When presented with a red-tag furnace, homeowners have two options:
- Replace the heat exchanger – This is the component that caused the system to be red tagged. When a heat exchanger cracks, it allows carbon monoxide to mix with air that’s delivered into the home’s living spaces, and you can no longer be assured that the venting process is safe. If you have a warranty on the furnace, it will likely cover the cost of the exchanger, but labour costs for replacing it are often high, because your technician will have to disassemble the furnace to reach the heat exchanger.
- Replace the entire furnace – Homeowners will often choose to replace the entire system if their existing furnace is old, inefficient, and/or hasn’t been serviced regularly. In this case, the money that would have gone toward replacing the heat exchanger is better spent on a new, highly efficient system.
Homeowners have a third option, which will help to prevent a red-tag furnace. Servicing your furnace regularly keeps the components clean, and your technician will be able to spot problems with the heat exchanger—along with other components—before they happen.
Keep your furnace system in good condition, and avoid a red-tag furnace scenario by having it serviced regularly. In the Calgary area, contact the area’s leading HVAC experts at Arpi’s Industries. We can walk you through your options if your furnace is red tagged or schedule a service appointment. Serving local 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 furnaces and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.