Two days ago I realized the furnace wasn’t kicking on.
It is not the first time I have walked by the thermostat and noticed the temperature gauge did not match where I had the heat set. Not the first time I leaned down to put my hand over the grate to feel nothing coming out. I flip the heat gauge up in hopes of hearing the furnace come roaring to life only to be faced with silence.
It’s always something with this old beast of a machine crammed in to a tiny cellar below our kitchen. When we bought the house we knew it was old. It had a complete tune up before we went to settlement. Every valve, hose, filter, and thingamagig was replaced and the whole system was cleaned. ‘It wont last forever,’ they said, ‘but it will get you through winter.’
And it has chugged through this winter reluctantly. A few trips from the mechanic and a few more replaceable parts discovered all has led to my seething dislike for the it. So when I discovered once again it had gone on strike, I was beyond over trying to nurse this hunk of junk any longer.
But this time it was our neglect that caused it to power down and resist my previous successful attempts at getting her going again. (Yes mine, and not my husbands because it only quits when he is at work adding to my disgust with it.) We under estimated how quickly it would burn through oil and it ran dry.
Thankfully the oil company was able to come out quickly and fill her back up. I was happy to leave the house knowing when I returned the chill would be knocked off and I could return the heat disks to their place in the attic. Except when I returned it was still cold. The furnace still quiet.
Of course I did not return home at a reasonable hour in which one feels like dealing with a stubborn furnace, no I came home late after having dinner with friends. I wanted to go snuggle up in bed full of good food and conversation. Instead I found myself at 11pm crouched in front of the pump in my dark cellar, rigging hose to bleed the line to try and let any air out while my husband walked me through the wikihow article via facetime and gave me moral support.
It worked, the furnace came to life, heat began to blow out of the vents. I began cleaning up the oil that didn’t make it into my bucket and return the tools I had brought down still feeling pretty pissy about the whole thing, looking forward to the day we finally replaced the stupid thing and I could take a sledge hammer to the jerk like the printer scene in Office Space.
But then my husband told me he was proud of me.
He said that I should feel awesome that instead of going to sleep cold and angry, I did something about the problem. I figured it out and was able to go to sleep in a warm house.
Begrudgingly I admitted he was right. It did feel awesome figuring out how to fix the furnace myself. That I didn’t have to sleep huddled under a mountain of blankets with a heat disk stewing over how much I hated that stupid furnace. That I was willing to get my hands dirty instead and was able to sleep comfortably and wake up feeling awesome that I had solved the problem.
I wont always drift from my normal pessimistic nature, but right now I am going to drag out this moment for as long as I can.
As always, thanks for reading.