On 14 Mar 2007 10:58:14 -0700, email@example.com wrote:
Absolutely not for safety reasons.
One of the biggest scams of the hvac business hoodlums is telling
customers that the crack in their heat exchanger is dangerous and shut
down the system.
Since time began, no one has been made sick or died because of a
cracked heat exchanger. Don't let those crooks tell you otherwise.
Did you know that there are tens of millions of americans that are
burning fuel with 100 percent of the combustion byproducts being
released inside the living quarters. You ever hear of coleman stoves
or room heaters or wall furnaces?
Did you know that because the pressures involved just about guarantee
that none of the combustion fumes from a cracked heat exchanger enter
If you know of a crooked hvac person that actually shuts down the
system with cracked heat exchanger, report him widely as a dishonest
person. He is just trying to rob you and has the morals of a snake.
Around here they're legally required to tag it and notify the gas
company. It then has to be replaced in 30 days or the gas will be shut off.
The guy that inspected the furnace in the house that we bought last fall
noted that it was bad, but didn't tag it because it would cause all
sorts of hassles right during the ownership transfer period.
I can't...its not available online, and it costs about $180 for a copy.
Note that I'm up in Canada.
The guy who did our furnace inspection mentioned that he would do the
replacement install if we wanted but he normally doesn't do installs.
He also didn't make any specific recomendations as to who we should get
to do the install.
After some more digging, I did find something. See the "Red Tag
Program" link at:
It looks like its even more stringent than I thought. According to that
document, a cracked heat exchanger is technically considered a
"hazardous condition". This requires either immediate repair or else
turning off the gas to the appliance and notifying the gas utility.
My apologies for leading you astray about the co2 and co error I
made. I didn't take chemistry although I have a doctorate. Should
have spelled out the words: carbon monoxide, although I believe
everyone knew what we were talking about. When you don't like the
message, attack the messenger.
I watched a show on 60 minutes or 20-20 and learned a great deal
about these so called repairmen.
I'm going to get me one of those carbon monoxide detectors when the
price goes under $20 at Walmart. <g>
There are indeed too many scams going on. Nationwide deaths from
cracked furnace tubes is pretty low for this to be a common problem.
But it is not something to dismiss out of hand.
The best test is still to ask if you have a sick home syndrome? That
is do you have unexplained headaches, unexplained tiredness
principally at home, vomitting and respiratory problem especially in
cold weather but not in summer. Then suspect a faulty furnace. Home
quality CO detectors aren't that reliable. Keeping house plants and
a pet bird or keeping aquarium fish will be far more effective warning
indicators should they die early. They are in the house all the time.
That said call the gas company for an unbiased inspection. At least
in my city they don't do any repair services and are not conflicted to
recommend unecessary repairs.
Sure it is. It definitely should be dismissed out of hand. It's
No one ever got a headache from a cracked heat exchanger, much less
died. It is actuallly physically impossible.
But those heat exchangers often come with a 20 year or lifetime
warranty so have it replaced by all means, since it's free. Maybe in
the process the guy will actually find something else such as burner
rollout that could actually be harmful.
The heat exchanger can be replaced. There is no safety issue if it's done
On the other hand, the above responce with the others following are from a
They can and do become dangerous...
You better do research next time, before you make yourself look like a
complete IDIOT, Einstein.
Do you realize that NOTHING burns 100% ?
And this means that there is CO entering a home if the appliance isn't
BULLSHIT!! You better go back to school to see if you can ACTUALLY learn
something this time around.
Yeah, report him... he's just trying to save your life.
That's a crime you know!
The responce you recieved in this post by Deke is completely INACCURATE.
I hope like hell he's NOT in the HVAC business... otherwise he's not only
giving BAD advice on usenet, but his clients are likely to be living in
The only thing true that Deke stated.... is on the line below...
The fact is the AGA's regulations tell us what and what is not
allowed. Cracks in heat exchangers are not allowed. Since the AGA
has said no crack or hole is acceptable what sort of legal defense
would you mount if someone became ill or died regardless of whether or
not the crack was relevant?
BS. The average person below poverty in the US has multiple color TVs
and a car.
If the crack was not relevant, that would be the defense to a civil
suit. People are only liable for their negligence if their negligence
actually causes some harm. If it actually has something to do with
causing the damages. How much relationship and proximate cause are
things I don't remember and can't explain anymore.
Of course it can be hard to prove it's not relevant, and it might be
even harder to prove it to a jury which might be concerned about the
poor person who suffered the damages. Because after all, how did they
become ill or die if not because of something the owner of the house
did that he shouldn't have done? He tripped and fell down the
stairs? He tripped and felll down the stairs because he was groggy
from the CO?
But I still wanted to make the point.
I see on tv court shows pretty something else that is similar. People
who believe that if the other driver doesn't have a license, or has a
suspended license, that is relevant to their civil suit against him,
when really it's only whether or not he was driving negligently that
Being unlicensed is between him and the state government.
I didnt' say he should leave anything in service.
I was just explaining the law on the matter. The law is that people
are only liable for their negligence if their negligence actually
causes some harm.
But I also pointed out that he might lose in court even he wasn't
I think it is Maryland where they just found out that a ballistics
expert who testified in many cases didn't have two academic degrees
like he said, and lied about other parts of his resume too, and may
not have been qualified at all. And yet in one case, his testimony
was, according to the jurors, responsible for someone's conviction and
for the jury's recommending daath. And they exectuted him; the guy is
And the "expert", when people started suspecting he had been lying,
killed himself. One cannot count on things going right in court.
Cracked heat exchangers should be replaced. No argument there.
But most gas furnaces do not produce much co. The supply air is way over
capacity. And the systems are designed so that a crack in the heat
exchanger does not automatically result in combustion byproducts in the
conditioned air. The air pressure outside the heat exchanger is higher than
the air pressure inside the heat exchanger. The result is that air goes
into the heat exchanger from the crack, not out of it. That's why the fan
is always ahead of the heat exchanger. Bottom line is the unit produces a
small amount of total co. Maybe a tiny amount of the total combustion
product gets through the crack against the higher outside pressure. What
you're talking about is a very small percentage of an already small
I've seen significantly cracked/rusted heat exchangers, so cracked that the
flames start dancing around when the fan kicks on. Obviously been leaking
for a while. Yet these same houses have co detectors and they have never
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