There’s a Red Tag on Your Furnace. Now What?

If your furnace has been red tagged, the key thing to remember is that it’s because your furnace is unsafe and needs to be either repaired or replaced. The technician often has no choice: the law requires a red tag if the furnace is a danger to you, your family, your home and sometimes even your neighbours too.

While furnaces keep us warm in winter, there are two main hazards of improperly maintained furnaces.

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  1. Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning. CO is colourless, odourless, and deadly. Because you cannot detect it, it has been called “the silent killer”. Every year people die from carbon monoxide poisoning. They simply fall asleep and never wake up again.
  2. Fire or explosion. Natural gas is a fossil fuel. It burns, and if ignited under pressure can explode.

A gas furnace kept in good repair is very safe. And most people nowadays know that Ontario law requires that they have a carbon monoxide alarm in their home. But sometimes someone doesn’t know about good furnace maintenance, and the red tag program kicks in. Your gas provider is notified and your gas supply is turned off until the furnace is made safe.

Types of Red Tags

There are two types of red tags, each with a different severity.

Red Tag Type A

This is the most serious type. It means you and your family are in serious danger right now. Generally this means that a carbon monoxide leak has been detected. With a Type A tag, the gas company is called right away and your gas is shut off.

Red Tag Type B

This is a warning tag. Your gas is not shut off right away, but you need to get your furnace fixed within the stated time period or else your gas will be shut off.

Who Runs the Red Tag Program

A red tag is issued when any furnace, water heater or other natural gas appliance is in violation of Ontario Gas Installation Code B149. The program is controlled by the TSSA – Technical Standards Safety Authority.

While red tagging may seem unfair at first, it’s done in the interest of saving lives.

Are All Red Tags for Real?

They are supposed to be, but some companies that we’ve heard of issue red tags to get extra work making “repairs” that aren’t needed. If your furnace has been red tagged, call in the experts at Dr HVAC for a second opinion. We will assess the situation and let you know what your options are.

How to Prevent Red Tagging

As “boring” as this may sound, your best defence is good old fashioned maintenance. While our technology may seem like magic sometimes, it’s not. It works hard and experiences wear and tear. Just like your car or your teeth, your furnace and water heater need regular inspection, cleaning and a check.

The Good News

Dr HVAC can provide an honest assessment of what’s really wrong with your furnace. If the red tag is for real, we can provide cost-effective and expert service. We’ll give you advice on what to do about your furnace, and we will outline the costs and benefits of all the options available.

Ask for your second opinion today. There’s no obligation and you’ll love our honest, no-pressure approach.