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Winter Weather Causing Furnace Troubles

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WICKLIFFE, Ohio -- According to H. Jack's Plumbing and Heating, this latest round of winter weather is causing problems at several homes across Northeast Ohio.

"We got a call to a residence here because they had no heat coming from the furnace. And what we found was the snow had built up on the pipe outside, which shut the furnace down," said Patrick Kotek, the vice president of H. Jacks.

Kotek said snowdrifts can sometimes block furnace vents and air intakes into people's homes.

"These high-efficiency furnaces vent through PVC pipes, and they are usually low to the ground instead of up through the old chimneys. And what happens with the large snow fall, and the snow coming off the roof, it blocks off the pipes," added Kotek.

And there could be a potentially bigger problem than just a cold house.

Experts say in older homes the vents could get blocked and push carbon monoxide back into the house.

"Carbon monoxide could be a big problem. You can’t smell carbon monoxide so you don't know that you have a problem. I suggest carbon monoxide detectors in the house," said Kotek.

Best advice: check the area around the furnace and vents after any significant snowfall.