Chilly spell strains many furnaces, restore skill in southern Colorado

PUEBLO WEST, Colorado (KRDO) – It’s easy to take modern domestic stoves for granted in winter – until they stop turning on when we really need them.

On a weekend with low temperatures near -20 ° C and highs near zero, many homeowners found that their stoves couldn’t handle the stress.

And many repair teams cannot keep up with the demand for repairs.

“I turned customers away,” said a craftsman on Monday. “One of them didn’t like it. I told him I might be able to reach him in a few days. I’m booked out.”

Tom Massman, a KRDO producer who lives in Pueblo West, was one of the many homeowners who can get by without heat – which is not a good thing when his 86-year-old mother lives with him.

“My oven turned on and off last month,” he said. “I noticed it more when the weather got colder – especially when it was snowing. It would be on and suddenly it would be stopped. And it would stop for about two days.”

After two visits from a mechanic that lasted several weeks, Massman’s oven was pumping out heat again.

“This morning it was 50 degrees here,” he said. “It was 72 today. I was worried about my mother because she only had blankets and space heating to keep warm. Older people are already cold because many have poor circulation.”

Massman said his handyman told him the oven kept turning on and off, which burned a control switch.

“I think that was because snow was blowing into the intake pipe that provides air for the flames,” he said.

The mechanic said snow is a common factor in furnace repairs.

“I can usually find out what’s going on in 10 or 15 minutes,” he said. “Usually snow gets into an oven somehow, or it’s one of those high-powered ovens. They have lots of parts and lots of things that can break.”

Massman said a home warranty kept his repair bill under $ 100.

“If you don’t have one, you will pay through the nose,” he said. “Especially if it’s an ongoing problem that requires a mechanic to come out more than once.”

Massman hasn’t had much luck with heaters lately.

“I also have a wood pellet stove,” he said. “But it doesn’t work either.”

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