Is It Normal to Smell Gas Near a Furnace?


Anytime you smell gas in your home, you should always investigate the situation. There’s probably nothing to worry about if you notice the smell after activating your furnace for the first time in a while. Furnaces emit a faint gas smell after turning them on, but the smell should disappear within a few minutes.

What to Do

You should be worried if the gas smell is strong and lasts for several minutes. In that case, leave the house immediately and evacuate other occupants. Also, avoid turning on appliances, lighting a match, or switching on lights. Since gas smells near a furnace can be hazardous, it’s wise to immediately call your local gas company. Remember to also shut off all gas lines around your home for your safety as you wait for the gas company to arrive.

What a Gas Smell Means

Gas smells around your furnace can be due to various problems, but you can track the primary issue back to the heat exchanger. A sure way to tell if the heat exchanger is the cause of the gas smell near your furnace is to check the smell’s origin. If it’s coming from the registers, then the heat exchanger is the cause. Gas smells near the furnace can smell like rotten eggs or fireworks. The smell indicates possible gas leaks that come with several risks. A faulty or cracked heat exchanger can also cause gas leaks. You may need a qualified technician to fix the faulty heat exchanger.

A Back-Drafting Furnace

Back-drafting is when the furnace gases leak into the surrounding area instead of the gas leaving your home. It could also be the cause of gas smells in your house. Some common causes of back-drafting furnaces include leaky ducts, a leaky or clogged flue, and operating several exhaust fans in an airtight home.

Call our professionals to inspect your furnace for problems that could be causing gas leaks. You can also come to us for affordable AC and heating repairs, installations, and maintenance services in Mount Airy. Contact J’s HVAC Unlimited today to schedule an appointment.