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Old 10-30-2008, 10:08 AM   #1
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


Bought house 1 1/2 years ago, (1,700 sq ft 2 story composite built 1983). Original Ruud gas furnace in basement closet. Closet not well sealed. While checking out filter, etc the other day, noticed exhaust vent pipe completely off furnace outlet. Now I know why basement was always so warm in winter and max gas bill $120 last winter (Feb). Googled dangers of CO2 and Gov site stated handful of dealths per year vs death by CO2 from house fires. House is pretty tight, double pane wood windows, no drafts. Why am I still alive?

Richmond, Va
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Old 10-30-2008, 06:56 PM   #2
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


Good question. Get that exhaust fixed.

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Old 10-30-2008, 09:48 PM   #3
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


I know what you meant when you said CO2 but really meant CO.

Just to clarify, it is the exhaust that is off or is it the venting to the house that is off?

If it is the exhaust the reason that there wasn't a large build up of CO in the house is there there was a draft going up the vent to the outside. Heat always rises and the basement is warmer than the outside in the winter. So a draft was created and once the furnace fired up it actually increased the draft. It it was further away or not there at all then you wouldn't be writing to us today.

I am a retired paramedic and have seen critical people with caboxyhemoglobin (CO poisoning) and also seen my fair share of dead people from CO so I know what it can do first hand.
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Old 10-30-2008, 10:47 PM   #4
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


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Originally Posted by Marvin Gardens View Post
I know what you meant when you said CO2 but really meant CO.

Just to clarify, it is the exhaust that is off or is it the venting to the house that is off?

If it is the exhaust the reason that there wasn't a large build up of CO in the house is there there was a draft going up the vent to the outside. Heat always rises and the basement is warmer than the outside in the winter. So a draft was created and once the furnace fired up it actually increased the draft. It it was further away or not there at all then you wouldn't be writing to us today.

I am a retired paramedic and have seen critical people with caboxyhemoglobin (CO poisoning) and also seen my fair share of dead people from CO so I know what it can do first hand.
What did he call it?NH3?
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Old 10-31-2008, 09:55 AM   #5
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


The vent pipe connected to the furnace outlet was disconnected and moved to one side a few inches. The vent pipe was still connected to the pipe in the ceiling. I guess enough updraft was created thru the vent pipe to remove most of the CO.

Knew enough to put it back on and ducted taped it. I guess I was lucky.....scary.

I Googled Carboxyhemoglobin and it only takes 28 days to have it mess up your nerves and brain, etc., but ~ 1year on oxygen therepy to recover. ....I'lllll ownlee no tha diffffferrrence ayyt that tyme watt damnage it had does 2 mee..... Yhanks Marvin

Going to invest some of my home equity into a new furnace and outside A/C unit in the near future. Any advice on paying market price from a Ruud, Reems, Trane, York, etc service company or can I get the same quality from someone like a retired DIY HVAC handyman for an honest markup? Any favorite mfg? I'm thinking $2,000 - $2,500 would be what I'd like to pay (complete turnkey job).

Hey Drac....I'm afraid to ask, but what does NH3 stand for?

Thanks all













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Old 10-31-2008, 10:46 AM   #6
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


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Knew enough to put it back on and ducted taped it. I guess I was lucky.....scary.

I Googled Carboxyhemoglobin and it only takes 28 days to have it mess up your nerves and brain, etc., but ~ 1year on oxygen therepy to recover. ....I'lllll ownlee no tha diffffferrrence ayyt that tyme watt damnage it had

Ohhhh, NO DUCT TAPE ON A VENT. Pull it off. Use small screws to screw it in. Duct tape will melt and could catch on fire.

Yes, carboxyhemoglobin is a bad thing.

I had one guy who plumbed his exhaust into the rear window of his car using a garden hose and duct tape and went for a drive in the woods. Of course the CO eventually caught up with him and he smashed into a tree.

A guy from the forest service found him and called 911. When we got their the forest service guy said, "I think he was trying to kill himself". I smiled and thought nothing gets past this guy.

The patient survived only to blow his brains out a month later. Sometimes there is no stopping suicide.
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Old 10-31-2008, 12:17 PM   #7
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


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Originally Posted by RPM1020 View Post
The vent pipe connected to the furnace outlet was disconnected and moved to one side a few inches. The vent pipe was still connected to the pipe in the ceiling. I guess enough updraft was created thru the vent pipe to remove most of the CO.

I Googled Carboxyhemoglobin and it only takes 28 days to have it mess up your nerves and brain, etc., but ~ 1year on oxygen therepy to recover. ....I'lllll ownlee no tha diffffferrrence ayyt that tyme watt damnage it had does 2 mee..... Yhanks Marvin
The fact that you are here talking to us proves you have suffered some kind of damage Just kidding...

Draft is a function of several things: id temp, od temp, length of chimney and atmospheric pressure. So your setup and environmental conditions might have helped out a lot. And as someone mentioned, the exhaust leakage could have increased the draft as the unit ran helping out more.

I would consider yourself pretty luck and go buy a lottery ticket today, and CO detector.
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Old 10-31-2008, 12:45 PM   #8
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Major Exhaust vent leak - problem?


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I would consider yourself pretty luck and go buy a lottery ticket today, and CO detector.
Yes on both counts.

And of course you would share the lottery winnings with us.

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