Red Tag

What Does a Red Tag on Your Furnace Mean?

So, there’s a red tag on your furnace and you’re wondering what it means. Let’s put it this way, if Canada’s most-wanted criminals were treated like furnaces, they’d all be red-tagged … because they’re dangerous.


Bad joke aside, a red tag on your furnace means that it will be shut down. More often than not red tags are applied due to some kind of gas leak. If your heating system has a leak, carbon monoxide could be entering your home and putting you and your family at risk. To protect you from any harm your service technician will shut down the machine until it can be safely operated.


One of the most common causes of these leaks is a cracked heat exchanger. A crack in your heat exchanger can vary in location and size but no matter the type, they are all dangerous. To find out why cracked heat exchangers happen and how you can prevent them visit our previous blog post covering that topic.


While gas leaks are certainly the most common cause of a red tag, they are not the only one. Red tags can also be applied if the service technician feels that your system is a fire or electrical hazard.


The type of threat your system is imposing is what will decide which type of red tag will be applied to the machine. The two types of red tags are Type A and Type B.


A Type A tag is the more dangerous of the two. The service technician will have identified an immediate threat, applied the red tag and turned off your gas right away. These tags are most common in cases where there is a gas leak, which can have very serious consequences.


A Type B tag still deems your system dangerous, but the service technician will refrain from turning off your gas right away. These can be more common when electrical or fire hazards are discovered. Although your gas is not turned off right away, there is a time limit set on when it will be. If your machine has not been repaired or replaced by the assigned date – usually 45 days – one of your local utility companies will come to turn it off.


Scheduling regular maintenance can help to prevent or catch these problems. If you are able to discover the problem early, there is a much higher likelihood that it will simply be a repair rather than an entire system replacement.


Contact us if you have any questions or if you would like to schedule a service call.

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