Heating season can cause safety issues

The weather is starting to feel a little more brisk and with that comes some safety concerns that may cause problems for homes and occupants.

Soon enough temperatures will be on a consistent trend downward and more furnaces will be kicked on. Anything can happen if there has not been seasonal maintenance performed.

“It's heating season and most folks are just starting them up,” said Carey Frazier of Michiana Heating and Cooling Inc. With that starting up comes other problems.

“Dirty filters, dead batteries, plugged filters,” that is what Frazier, who is a service manager, said he sees most frequently. He said everything leads to a no-heat situation. Getting maintenance is necessary since it has been more than a half a year without the use of heat.

“Most break-downs are due to dirty furnaces,” said Frazier. A break-down is the best case scenario. That is where a carbon monoxide detector comes in. Every level of each home needs one.

“Carbon monoxide you cannot smell it. You may smell other products of combustion but you're not going to smell the CO itself,” said Gerard Ellis, a Captain of the South Bend Fire Department. It is often called the silent killer.

“You just don't wake up from CO,” said Frazier.

That is why a simple trip to the store to purchase a twenty-dollar detector can save a life. “I think until it happens it really doesn't raise awareness,” said Gerard.

Michiana Heating and Cooling said even though the heating season is in full swing, it is never too late to get maintenance done.

In addition, the South Bend Fire Department offers one detector to each household for free.
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