Clear Vent Pipes: A Key To Winter Safety

Posted: January 11, 2021

heating vent pipe maineThe heating system in your Maine home relies on a clear path for airflow in order to keep you and your family comfortable throughout the season. One of the biggest obstacles in making this happen—even if you have a high-efficiency unit—is snow.

Your heating system has an exhaust pipe, also called a vent pipe. If you’re in a relatively new home, your system may also have an air intake pipe. This is different from older homes, where the vent pipe was often in the chimney. In the chimney, it would not get blocked by snow or any other debris.

An air intake pipe generally protrudes through an exterior wall, which is how snow can become an issue. Blockages caused by snow can lead to safety risks for your family. The following background information will help you understand how the vent pipes can become a safety hazard:

As you can see, cleared air vents are of the utmost importance throughout the heating season. Here are a few steps you can follow to ensure that your intake and exhaust vents stay clear.

  1. Find your vents. Start at your furnace. If your system vents through the chimney, an aluminum pipe will come out of the back of your equipment. If your system vents through an exterior wall, you will see two PVC pipes (intake and exhaust—each three inches in diameter) coming off the top. Follow those pipes to see where they leave your home.
  2. Mark the vents. Mark the location of your vents so you can find them at any time—even in deep snow.
  3. Clear the vents. Shovel any snow around your vents. Then use a broom to clear the actual vent in order to avoid damaging the equipment.

Your safety is our priority! Please contact us anytime you have questions or concerns about your oil or propane furnace. If you need a heating oil or propane delivery for your Maine home, please let us know!