‘We could get anywhere from 50 to 100 phone calls;’ Cold temperatures put furnaces to test

MIAMI VALLEY — The Miami Valley is waking up to cold temperatures this morning.

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Some areas are seeing lows in the upper teens this morning while most of the area is waking up to temperatures in the low 20s.

Our Storm Center 7 team of meteorologists say this is the coldest air we’ve seen since March.

Some areas could even see a few snow flurries this morning.

News Center 7′s Xavier Hershovitz is out in the elements and will have a live update during News Center 7′s Daybreak starting at 4:25 a.m.

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The cold temperatures can also take a toll on people’s furnaces.

News Center 7′s Kayla McDermott spoke with Chris Bryant of McAfee Heating and Air on Monday.

He said without proper maintenance, furnaces can break and he’s expecting several calls.

“We could get anywhere from 50 to 100 phone calls,” he said.

Workers are McAfee Heating and Air are prepared for all those calls.

“With the temperature drop like it is, everything’s going to be working overtime,” said Bryant.

>>RELATED: ‘It is crucial;’ Homeowners urged to check heating systems as temperatures fall

That may cause some furnaces to give out, mainly because of the filters, he told McDermott.

“They overheat,” explained Bryant. “They don’t like that, and they’ll actually break, fail, or lockout on a safety.”

“Do they ever start a fire from those filters?” McDermott asked.

“Yes,” he answered. “It is a real danger.”

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He says it is a preventable danger when people change their filters.

“People should be changing them every 30 days,” he told McDermott.

Bryant has been tending to people’s furnaces for more than 30 years. He said he often sees people closing vents to try and heat certain rooms or attempt to save energy.

But he told McDermott that only causes more problems, and those vents should be open.

“That allows the system to breathe,” said Bryant. “It allows it to work better, actually closing them off as a reverse effect.”

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For those whose furnace does break and waiting for people to come and fix them, there are some things you should not do to stay warm.

“You don’t want to use you know, a grill. You don’t want to open up your oven,” said Bryant. “These things can produce carbon monoxide.”

He added that some people use their oven to heat up their whole house and have the oven cranked up and the door wide open.

Bryant said to prevent any of these issues on mornings as cold as this, he said people should be getting their furnaces checked once every year.

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