“You’re Taking This Well”

Last Thursday during routine furnace maintenance, the technician found a hole in the 2nd chamber from the left of the heat exchanger & a crack in the inducer transition of our 13-year-old gas furnace.

[You’re thrilled, right?  Scintillating first sentence.]

He immediately turned off the gas & electric on the furnace and put a red tag on the front of it.  The red tag said:


Then he very politely asked me to go with him downstairs into the basement to talk about our furnace.  I knew that this wasn’t going to be good.

[I didn’t just fall off the new homeowner turnip truck, ‘ya know?]

So, down we went.  The technician explained the problems, told me about my two solutions to the problems, and then stood there waiting for me to explode.

But I didn’t get mad at all.  I just started to laugh.  A crazy, silly laugh.  It was a laugh that a woman steeped in a life of irony would produce when told that her plans were once again being thwarted.

“You’re taking this well,” he said.  “Most woman yell at me when I tell them their furnace is dead– and needs costly repairs or to be replaced entirely.”

Instead, I stood there– laughed & smiled– basking in the self-knowledge that just that very morning I’d allowed myself to dream that we might actually get the new wall-to-wall carpeting installed on the second floor of the house by Thanksgiving.  That this year for the holidays our home might look tidy without 13-year-old skunky, dirty, original wall-to-wall carpet uglifying the place. 

[And let me interject here to say that wall-to-wall carpeting is something that I hate to my core, but I accept as a necessary evil of suburbia. Making this situation doubly ironic.]  

Yep, that’s what I was thinking as the technician started to tell me the price of a new furnace.   I didn’t listen very carefully to the rest of what he said.  It didn’t matter to me.  I knew that we’d be buying a new furnace, regardless of the cost, by the end of the day.

And that I could put my carpet samples back in the drawer where I’ve kept them for a couple of years.   Waiting for just the right time to buy wall-to-wall carpeting… which I’m beginning to believe is never.

5 thoughts on ““You’re Taking This Well”

  1. Can’t you get a new heat exchanger? That’s what we did and it wasn’t hellaciously expensive. Heat exchangers usually have a very long warranty. 20 years? Is this a guy you trust or could you get a second opinion. Same thing happened to us, but we called my parents’ furnace guy and he knew all about heat exchanger warranties. Ended up being hundreds of dollars versus thousands.


  2. Margaret, we explored the heat exchanger route (which in our case was in the thousands of dollars range). Ours was still under warranty, but the other non-warranty parts in the old furnace were is such almost worn-out shape that we went with a new furnace. We’ve always had a few ongoing issues with the old furnace since the beginning, so getting a new one seemed like the best idea.

    Plus the new furnace is a high efficiency, two stage deal… which means reduced energy costs + a cleaner house + a more evenly heated home. Not an exciting purchase, but a good one [I hope].


  3. Relyn, somehow crying never crossed my mind! Call it intuition but I just knew that the old furnace wasn’t going to make it through another winter. So, I guess, on some level I was expecting it to go kaput. Still, new carpeting would of been a nice use of the money. *sigh*


  4. Our furnace had some issues this week too! Fortunately, the repair was relatively inexpensive. (The actual repair was only $4, but then the repair man tacked on another $216 for his pleasant conversation.) I was glad since we really do want new flooring!


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