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What Is a Heating Emergency?

Generally speaking, it is considered a heating repair emergency whenever you are without heat in the winter. It gets cold here in Virginia and Maryland, and as such, if you are without heat for an extended period, you risk not only damage to your home (frozen pipes, etc.) but your and your family’s health may also be at risk.

Those particularly vulnerable to the cold include:

  • Children
  • Seniors
  • Pets

If you are in a situation where you have no heat, call an HVAC specialist, like Donmar Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, who offers 24/7 emergency services.

What to Do When You Don’t Have Heat

When your heater goes out, your first order of business is to try and keep as much heat as possible inside and avoid cold air seeping into your home. Therefore, when the heating goes out, do your best to insulate your home. This should include closing all windows and drawing the blinds and curtains. Additionally, avoid going in and out of your home, as each time you open the door, you allow heat to escape and cold air to get in.

Other steps to take when your heating goes out:

  • Layer up – put on sweaters, sweatshirts, socks, gloves, and hats to keep warm
  • Move to the warmest part of the house, and close off the other areas to try and keep the warmth contained to a smaller area
  • If you still have power, use heating pads, electric blankets, and space heaters*

If you have a safe, operational fireplace, use it. While your fireplace may not be able to keep your entire home as warm as you want, it can help keep the immediate area comfortably warm and can help prevent issues like frozen pipes.

*Note: if you are using a space heater, ensure it is rated for indoor use, and do not leave it unattended or on while sleeping, as it can pose a serious fire risk.

What Not to Do When You Don’t Have Heat

When your heating goes out in the winter, you may be desperate for warmth. However, there are several things you should never do as they pose serious health and safety risks. While staying warm is important, you should never disregard other safety issues, including fires, smoke inhalation, and carbon monoxide poisoning.

When your heater goes out, you should never do any of the following:

  • Run gas stoves with the doors open to try and heat a room
  • Bring outdoor heaters indoors, especially if they run on propane or other fuel
  • Use charcoal BBQs or other charcoal-burning devices indoors
  • Use unsafe fireplaces or wood-burning stoves

If you are in a situation where you cannot keep your home warm enough, it is always better to leave and go to a friend or neighbor’s house or a hotel. Never do anything that will compromise your health and safety.

What to Do While Waiting for Emergency Heater Repair

While you are waiting for our emergency heating repair team to arrive, there are a few things you can do to see if you can get the heat running again. The first thing is to check your thermostat settings to see if that is where the problem lies. If your thermostat is malfunctioning, resetting it to its factory settings (especially if you have a smart thermostat) may temporarily resolve the issue. You can also check to ensure that your heat registers are open and unblocked, that your air filters have been recently changed, and that the pilot light on your furnace didn’t go out.

Did your heat go out? Donmar Heating, Cooling & Plumbing can help. Our emergency heating repair specialists are always available. Give us a call, and we will get your heat back on asap.