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Have a new roof? Check your gas flue pipe vents

Disconnections can lead to carbon-monoxide leaks

SAN ANTONIO – Experts are asking people with new roofs to check their vents. Improper venting can lead to potentially deadly carbon-monoxide buildup and exposure.

 "If there's anything that allows carbon-monoxide to get into the attic or house, that's a problem," said Jimmy Shafer, with Shafer Services.

After hail pounded thousands of San Antonio homes in the spring, roofers have been deluged with work. In addition to swamped local companies, some outside roofers swooped in for work, then left town. 

"Sometimes, we get on jobs where roofers, or somebody, has rattled this (flue pipe) around and it's not connected properly," Shafer said.

That's a particular issue if you have a gas furnace or water heater. If the gas flue pipes are disconnected at any point, that can allow carbon monoxide to seep into the attic or home and build up.

Shafer is asking homeowners to check their connections and pipes.

"Just make sure you've got a good, solid connection and follow it all the way up to wherever it goes out through — the ceiling or roof," he said.

From the ground, the pipes should appear straight and at the proper height. Plumbing vents should be checked as well, because dangerous sewer gases can build up.

Anyone who is unsure or unable to see their pipes can ask a licensed AC and heating contractor to inspect it before cranking up the heater this winter.


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