You win, SANDY
The fully-trained Bud's Heating & Air Conditioning 24/7 Flood Response team is prepared to help you get through this! We can remove your flood damaged systems, replace your ductwork, install a new system, relocate your old system and anything else you may need.
In order to be prepared for your visit from one of our Flood response Team members, please do the following:
- Call Insurance Agent, document damage and take pictures
- Turn off any gas appliance that may have been reached by flood waters
Things you should know
Natural gas furnaces, space heaters and boilers all have gas valves and controls that are especially vulnerable to water damage from floods. Corrosion begins inside the valves and controls, and damage may not be readily visible, even if the outside of the device is clean and dry. At a minimum, this damage can result in reliability problems. More severe consequences could be fire or explosion. If there is any question whether flood water has reached a gas appliance, have the unit checked by Bud's
There are differing opinions regarding replacement versus repair of flood-damaged heating systems; however, most experts recommend replacement. Even if a furnace has been cleaned of debris and mud, and disinfected (often at a great cost), and seems to be working properly, parts may later corrode or malfunction and you may also lose your warranty coverage. The older a heating system is, the more likely it is to be inefficient, so you may be better off replacing yours even if it hasn't sustained much damage.
If your crawlspace is flooded and the duct is wet, DO NOT run your Heating and Cooling System. Doing so could cause contaminated water to enter the air handling unit and begin corrosion, cause unseen damage or even a fire.
DO NOT try to salvage duct insulation that has been in contact with flood water. It is impossible to decontaminate. Since many ducts are leaky, uninsulated, and lose a tremendous amount of heat, this is also your opportunity to eliminate wasteful heat loss. Duct work that has been in contact with flood water, even if it has dried our, should be replaced.
A second type of electric space heat is the central electric furnace. This furnace consists of electrically heated coils, a fan to provide air circulation across the coils, and controls which include safety relays. Just like the gas forced-air furnace, the electric forced-air system is susceptible to corrosion and damage, resulting in reliability problems or safety hazards. If there is any question whether flood water has reached an electric furnace, have the unit checked by Bud's
. In all cases where you have decided to try to salvage the unit, a qualified professional will need to replace all controls, safety interlocks, and probably motors.
Electric forced-air heating systems have essentially the same ductwork as gas-forced air systems, so the same actions are in order. Discard any wet duct insulation. Replace the ductwork before attempting to operate your comfort system.
Heat Pumps and Air Conditioning Systems
As with the other types of heating systems, the heat pump system will also have a system of distribution ducts. The same procedures of disassembling, cleaning, disinfecting, and drying are in order. Remember to replace ductwork
that has been in contact with flood waters.
If you need to replace your existing heat pump, or if you are considering switching to a heat pump because your existing heating system is beyond repair, consider the most energy-efficient model available. If electricity us the only energy source available, a heat pump system can be more cost-effective than electric resistance heating with a separate air-conditioning system.
Space Cooling Systems
Whether your home has been cooled with a central air conditioning system, a heat pump, or room air conditioners, you can replace flood-damaged units with energy-efficient models that can cut energy use by more than 20 percent. A professional can help you select a unit based on the size and tightness of your home.
Water Heating Systems
Whether your water heater is gas or electric, if it was exposed to flood water, the unit should be replaced. A new water heater is a relatively small investment, and replacing it is fairly easy to do.
In a gas unit, valves and controls will likely corrode. In an electric unit, the thermostat and controls will likely corrode. In both types, the insulation surrounding the unity will be contaminated and will be nearly impossible to disinfect. Additionally, the insulation would take a long time to dry, leading to corrosion of the tank from the outside.
Even if water heater components have been cleaned and the unit seems to operate properly, parts may corrode in the future. Both gas and electric water heaters have a pressure relief valve that can corrode and stick after being exposed to flood water. Be sure, therefore, to replace this valve as well.
Adapted from a US Department of Energy Publication, "Rebuilding Your Flooded Home: Guidelines for Incorporating Energy Efficiency"