Last winter three young girls from Troy, Ohio, were killed in their home by carbon monoxide in their sleep. The incident was caused by a faulty furnace and left the surrounding communities understandably rattled; to the point where this year, with the winter season rapidly approaching, the nearby Dayton Air Conditioning and Heating Association (DACHA) decided to do their part to prevent another similar tragedy.
On Friday, Sept. 18, the organization of professionals began inspecting, fixing, and in some cases completely replacing old furnaces as part of a national effort called “Heat the Town,” according to the local ABC affiliate abc22now.com.
“We went to more than 40 homes today,” said Amanda Kinsella, marketing director for Logan A/C and Heat Services. “Ten percent of the furnaces needed to be shut down and turned off.”
The best part of the operation is that they will do all the work for elderly, disabled, or low-income homeowners completely for free. Members of DACHA teamed with Rebuilding Together Dayton, another local organization, to find the people most in need of these services, and local companies supplied the materials. Allied Supply is donating all of the new furnaces.
Mike Kidwell is one of the people helping to do the inspections and actual work on the furnaces. One home he checked was owned by an elderly woman who chose to remain anonymous. After fixing the belt and thermal cup he turned it on only to discover it still wasn’t firing properly. Furnaces usually last between 15 and 18 years, and it was time for this one to be replaced.
The woman said she wouldn’t have any idea how to pay for a new furnace considering she’s retired and her budget couldn’t currently afford one. Fortunately for her, she wouldn’t have to pay a dime this time.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless killer. Every home should be equipped with specific detectors. Those who can’t afford can typically contact their local fire department, who can provide them free of charge.