Things were going swimmingly. Too swimmingly. I couldn't even think of anything to blog about because my mind was all "La la la la la, life is fine." Things were a tad on the boring side, but I've learned that can be a good thing, or if not, a condition easily alleviated with books and Netflix ...
Then I went to see my mum in Myrtle Beach for the weekend (she's fine, it all went fine and I bought a bag of toy plastic pirates). When I got home, I found the house a bit chilly. About 56 degrees ... but I had it set at 60 ... why hadn't the furnace kicked on?
I tried to get it to come on by turning the thermostat up to 70. Nope. I switched it from "auto" to "on." The fan came on, but it was blowing cold air. Feck. The damn thing's broken.
But maybe not! I've been trying to stay optimistic lately, so I tried to come up with happier scenarios. Maybe the pilot light just went out! I once lived in a crappy cheap apartment in Wisconsin with a three million-year-old furnace that had a dodgy pilot light, and I was always having to trudge down to the basement to re-light it if I wanted heat. Which was always, because it was Wisconsin, for crissakes. What a pain in the ass that was. I'm not sure what about that memory caused me to be optimistic, but it did.
So I headed down to inspect the furnace, fully realizing that a good homeowner would have had someone out to look at it back in September before it got cold. Oh well. Too late now. In fact, I'd never even taken a really good look at the furnace before, mostly because it's in the inconvenient, gravel-floored crawly part of the basement, not the convenient concrete-floored standy/walky part. That's what you pay a home inspector to do when you buy, right? He had said it looked great, so I just left it to do its job, which it knows better than I do. Why micromanage? (Yeah, I know why ... shutup, OK?)
Well wow, my furnace really is nice, as far as furnaces go! Way nice compared to the old Wisconsin furnace. I figured out how to get the openy part open, but there was no pilot light to be seen. There was, however, an instruction and warning sticker, mounted sideways and difficult to read. But I read it and learned that my furnace has a fancy new-fangled self-lighting pilot. Easy breezy, I thought, I'll just follow the instructions and get her going again.
The instructions involved walking back upstairs (through the outdoors, as my basement is exterior-access), turning off the power to the furnace, turning the thermostat all the way down, going back to the basement, turning the gas control to "off," waiting five minutes, turning it back on, going back upstairs, restoring power and turning the thermostat up again. Fine, I figured, it's not a pain in the ass if it works and saves me a repair call.
It didn't work. I even did it twice just in case I hadn't held my mouth right the first time. So now I'm waiting for the repair guy to call and hoping it ends up being some small, easily replaced part. Surely a furnace so nice and pretty wouldn't need to be replaced altogether. What would I do if I found out I needed a new furnace? Maybe move to Mexico where life is warm and cheap ...