posted on March 14, 2017 15:19
With the recent snow accumulation across Western New York, National Fuel Gas Distribution Corporation (National Fuel) reminds all homeowners that snow and ice pose a variety of safety and performance issues to their heating systems. National Fuel advises all homeowners to be extra vigilant and pay careful attention to their furnaces and vents before, during and after any snowstorm.
Natural gas furnaces and fireplaces each have a vent pipe or flue that sends out exhaust and gaseous by-products to the outdoors. Depending on the type of furnace, venting takes place through a pipe on the outside of the house or through the chimney. These furnace exhaust vents can easily become clogged with debris, ice or snow. When snow piles up and blocks furnace vents, your furnace could shut off as a safety measure. Other times, it can cause furnaces to operate inefficiently or stop running altogether and break down. Blocked vents can lead to a build-up of carbon monoxide gas. Homeowners should make sure that their furnace vents are clear of snow, ice, debris or other obstructions. The same applies to your dryer vent; if it is blocked, your dryer may not operate as efficiently as it should.
Keep the area around and above the outdoor gas meter free of snow and ice. Remember to use caution when shoveling, plowing or snow blowing around the meter. Use a broom to remove snow from the meter itself. To avoid accidental damage by a third party, inform anyone who works near your meter (such as a snow removal service) of its location.
If you are experiencing an emergency due to the extreme cold weather, please call our emergency number at 1-800-444-3130. This line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
As always, if you smell gas, leave fast! If a rotten-egg natural gas odor is present, leave the premises immediately without turning on or off any electrical appliances and call National Fuel's emergency line (1-800-444-3130) from a different location. If you smell an odor of gas outdoors, please call National Fuel’s emergency number and provide the address nearest to the site of the odor.