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Can I Use My Furnace After A Flood?

furnace safety after flood new yorkFloods can devastate your home and belongings – including expensive home comfort equipment, which tends to be installed in the basement or lowest level of your house.

The question is, is your heating system safe to use after a flood has occurred?

The answer is maybe (we’ll explain more below). But before we get to that, let’s talk about three things you should do immediately if you have a flood in your Sullivan County home.

Three Steps To Take If You Have A Flood

If you have flood conditions in your home, take these three steps as soon as possible:

  1. Shut down all breakers to your basement before you go down there. If your breaker is in the basement, only attempt this if conditions make it safe to do so; if they don’t, contact an electrician for help.
  2. Begin removing water. While you will need to wash and sanitize everything to prevent mold damage, some items and décor may be salvageable. Take everything you can out of your basement to dry elsewhere – preferably outside the house.
  3. If it’s safe to do so, access your appliances, including your furnace or boiler, water heater, washer and dryer, etc. If your appliance has a pilot light, do NOT re-light it without a licensed service tech inspecting it first.

Using Your Furnace After A Flood

While restoring your furnace to working order could simply amount to giving it a thorough cleaning, you won’t know for sure without a professional heating system inspection. If your equipment has been exposed to water, do not use it before calling in a heating professional!

In the meantime, you can examine your outdoor condensing units (if you have a furnace), which are durable and can often withstand some water exposure. Look for a line to see how high the water rose; if that line extends only a few inches, the unit may be salvageable after inspection. If the water rose higher than halfway up the unit, the damage could be too extensive to fix.

The Bottom Line

If your basement has flooded and your heating equipment was affected, contact a qualified professional immediately. If your equipment is not properly inspected and cleaned, safety measures that protect you from fire or carbon monoxide hazards could fail. It’s simply not worth the risk to run your furnace without a clean bill of health from a heating expert!

If you need your furnace inspected after a flood, contact the pros at Black Bear. We’ll get it looked at quickly and either fix or replace your equipment correctly so you can get back to enjoying your warm home again. Contact us today to learn more about furnace repair and maintenance in Sullivan County, NY!