Norwood family reminds residents to check furnaces and chimneys annually
Monday, January 21, 2013 - 2:40 pm

To the Editor:

I was very suspicious when I picked up that blue card tucked in the side of my mailbox. The card, from Enbridge St. Lawrence Gas, stated: “Sorry you weren’t home when we called” – with a checkmark next to “to exchange your meter” and a hand written “Please call to schedule an appt.”. I couldn’t imagine why anybody would want to change out a gas meter in the middle of winter.

My wife called Enbridge about the card and was told that State regulations require that a set number of randomly selected customers needed to exchange old meters with new meters.

Joe Page, with Enbridge, knocked on the door and told me that it wouldn’t take long to exchange the meter. I “supervised” as Joe and his assistant were working. He explained that the meter was installed in 1998 and would be examined for accuracy. The guys were thorough in the exchange – though it was 17 degrees with a gentle breeze.

Joe inspected the furnace and immediately noticed what I had not. There was a break in the exhaust vent where it attached to the chimney. Carbon monoxide was leaking into our house. He told me that he could not turn on the gas until the vent was repaired. It was almost 2 p.m. on a Friday – and it was 17 degrees outside.

I called Cornerstone, in Norwood and explained my dilemma. They didn’t have anybody available then – but would send someone at 5 p.m.

Around 2:30 p.m., Kyle and Mike from Cornerstone were at my door. They checked out the damage, went for parts and the repairs were complete, tested and the heat was back on by 5 p.m.

I want to thank Joe and his assistant from Enbridge as well as Kyle, Mike and all of the good folks at Cornerstone. I’m sure that this isn’t the first time that they have helped folks on short notice.

My wife and I were having occasional headaches and at times, dizziness and nausea.

Kyle explained that most of the exhaust was being vented out to the chimney. The corrosion was caused by condensation over the years. With high winds, I believe that some of the exhaust was likely pushed back into the basement. If my wife hadn’t responded to that blue card from Enbridge – it’s possible that you may have been reading about this story on a different page. Have your furnace checked out annually by a professional.

Dennis and Diane Dockum, Norwood