Fuzzy: The Furnace King.

Today, Fuzzy did battle against the deadly furnace. Well, not really, but at least he managed to light the pilot light without blowing up the house, so, that’s a good thing.

This house has two a/c units, both of which live in the attic, one, which functions gloriously, controls the second floor. The other, the temperamental one, controls the first floor. (Personally, if I was responsible for heating that much open space, I’d be temperamental, too.)

Before we moved in, there was repair work done on the downstairs unit, because there was a problem with the water line, or something, but it cooled just fine, and when I tested it in early fall during a cold morning, the heater seemed to work. At least, when I walked under the kitchen vent, hot air blew in my face.

But since then, it hasn’t worked.

I’ve been nagging Fuzzy to climb up the pull-down ladder into the attic and check the pilot light for about a month now, because I think it’s really stupid to keep the upstairs furnace BLASTING in an attempt to heat the entire house, but he’s refused, citing his toe, and other reasons.

Admittedly, I have no intention of EVER going up there. It isn’t dark – there’s a light and stuff – but it’s cramped and there’s no real floor, and even though, from the hallway below the trap door, I can’t see any evidence of spiders, I’m CERTAIN they are lying in wait for me, and that they know Fuzzy doesn’t fear them, so there’s no reason to leave their dark corners for HIM.

He insisted, today, that the best thing to do was call TXU, but, as they confirmed, TXU is not PG&E and they don’t come out and light pilot lights. (They suggested a plumber, which confuses both of us. Because HVAC and plumbing are not usually handled by the same people). After that, he finally agreed to attempt to light the pilot lite (we’d determined yesterday that that was the actual problem).

He did mention that he was nervous about doing so, since the furnaces are gas, and he didn’t really feel the urge to blow up the house, but I pointed out that an ezisting pilot light was burning in the same space already, and therefore, the house would already be in cinders if there was an issue, and anyway, we have insurance. In fact, we somehow managed to pay the whole year in advance and still have our closing costs be lower than planned, but that’s a phenomenon of Texas math (apparently values are different here?) and not really relevant just now. He pointed out that there were sixteen steps in the lighting process, including flipping the breaker off – we tried that, actually, and the designated breaker did NOTHING. Yeah, lovely.

First attempt was with one of my butane candle lighters. It wasn’t small enough. So Fuzzy tromped downstairs, and searched the kitchen for the box of wooden matches (“They’re on the counter by the sink,” I told him. “I don’t see them,” he said, while facing a completely different counter.) But they were too short. So he went off to the grocery store to buy fireplace matches (and tuna, because we were out), and then returned, for another attempt.

Five minutes later, we had heat, and we still have heat. And the formerly frigid dining room can now double as a sauna.

Oh, right, and nothing blew up.

Yay, Fuzzy.