Warm and Toasty Again

For the past two months, we’ve been shivering and bundling up in blankets because our furnace broke. This isn’t the sort of thing you tend to discover in July, and we realized something was wrong in mid-October when we first went to turn on the heat this season (the burning oil smell was a clue). 

It turns out that a previous owner of our house – in a fit of misguided Yankee frugality – decided to make the ductwork a DIY special. 

That dummy made such a mess of it that it forced the furnace to an untimely demise, mainly due to a near-total lack or returned air to the system. This was not helped by the fact that another genius tiled over all the floor registers in the hallway and kitchen.  

The saga was made more difficult by the fact that we were trying to switch from oil to gas, since there’s a line right at the street. Too bad that NATIONAL GRID IS THE WORST COMPANY ON THE PLANET.

Even though we had an emergency situation without heat – in November! – they said we needed special permission to dig after a certain date. Even though we got that permission from the (truly) very fine folks at City Hall, and even though National Grid was happy to take our money instantly to pay for this project, they have some kind of nightmare bureaucracy in which representatives aren’t allowed to contact dig crews, so no one would tell us when (they were still using the word “if”!) we’d get a gas line before April. 

So by Thanksgiving, we gave up and decided to replace our furnace with another oil one. The oil company as never been anything but perfectly pleasant and prompt, and I can’t say that I’m sad not to ever give a penny to stupid horrible National Grid. 

We are still, however, waiting for our refund for the gas line no one could be bothered to dig.

After weeks of waiting and more weeks of work, we finally have a lovely new furnace and brand new, shiny ductwork everywhere:

We ended up having to tear out all of the old ductwork and redesign and replace it entirely. 

This was not a cheap project, but we do have a much more efficient furnace that we did in the past, so hopefully we’ll see a nice drop in our heating bills. There’s no way it can be more expensive than six weeks of electric space heater usage. (Ouch.)

Anyway, all of this was finished this weekend, and not a moment too soon:

It has been hard to feel even slightly Christmasy since we were fumbling around at the bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy this fall, but today we finally started to get in the spirit:

It was a very cold day to head to the tree farm, but we wanted to bring this in before the snow we’re expecting overnight. 

And it was very nice to come in from the cold to an actually very warm house – a very normal thing that still surprises us with how wonderful it actually is. 


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