Red Tag | 6

What to Do if Your Furnace Got a Red Tag in Ontario?

Written by Chris

red tag on furnaces in Toronto

Red-tagging means marking items to identify them as either unreliable or dangerous, needing exclusion from the rest. In Ontario, red tags are warning tags for failure to adhere to the Technical Standards and Safety regulations. Red tags can be bad for people and their pockets as they may be forced to pay hefty bills to get the red tag removal. In Ontario, furnaces are the most red-tagged household item.

Why Your Furnace Maybe Red Tagged?

According to the law, any appliance that is found to be in an unacceptable condition is liable for red-tagging by a licensed, certified gas technician. The technicians are allowed to decide whether a furnace or any other appliance should be red-tagged and the type of red tag to use. If the furnace or any other appliance has been damaged or shows some level of deterioration that may impair safe operation if the conditions of its pipes or tubes and hoses have an identified issue if the appliance is being used for unapproved purposes. Also, if the device has been altered and the alteration impairs its safe operation.

In the case of furnaces, the most common reason for red-tagging is a cracked heat exchanger. The heat exchanger in a furnace plays the role of transferring heat energy to the air in circulation while maintaining the combustion by-products in a safe mode.

Cracking may therefore result in the leaking of the products, which may cause danger to the handlers. Often, the tag placed on a furnace of any other appliance states the reasons for red-tagging, and whatever happens after that depends on the type of red tag. Therefore, furnace red tag removal becomes necessary.

Different Types of Red Tags

The categorizing of red tags is often based on the set-out standards in the technical regulations, and all companies adhere to the same rules of red-tagging. There are two main types of red tags; type A (an immediate red tag) and type B (30-day repair). The choosing of the red tags determines whether or not the appliance stays on as it is repaired.

1. Type A Red Tag

Also known as an immediate red tag. It implies that the licensed technician has established that the appliance’s condition poses an immediate danger and hence needs to stop the supply of gas to the appliance immediately. The machine is barred from use until the unsafe conditions are fixed and approved by the gas company as fit for use again.

2. Type B Red Tag

This is also known as a 30-day warning red tag, which implies that the technician has found the appliance unacceptable. However, he believes it does not pose an immediate danger to the users. The technician, therefore, gives a 30-day window period within which the appliance should be fixed. After the 30-day window period, the gas company stops the gas supply if they do not receive proof of the appliance being fixed.

In this case, the main difference between the two types of tags is the fact that for the A type of red tag, the technician stops the supply of gas immediately before leaving. On the other hand, for the B type, one is given a chance to resolve the identified problem before the supply of gas is cut off.

How to remove the Red Tag from my appliances?

1: Call a Technician.

Let Certified technicians come and check your equipment to find out what things need to be repaired to bring it back to life and remove that red tag. Therefore, you need to call a technician to inspect the appliance and make the necessary repairs.

2: Have the appliance inspected.

After the appliance has been repaired, it needs to be re-inspected for approval of whether the identified problem has been fixed. The technician who identified the fault is called again to do the inspection and either agree with the designation of the red tag and recommends a course of action or decides that it has been fixed and is ready for use. If they determine that it is fixed, the licensed technician completes the ‘clearance’ section of the red tag and turns on the appliance.

3: Submit the Red Tag Clearance to the Gas Company.

After completing the clearance, you need to ensure that the gas company gets the red tag clearance before the set deadline. Some companies often take care of this step for the customer. There is an offer of second opinions for red tags in Ontario where a certified gas technician inspects the appliance, determining whether it is safe.

Upon certifying that all is well, they fill out the clearance and turn on the appliance. However, once a furnace has been red-tagged for being in an acceptable condition in Ontario, there is no room for argument; a red is issued. The only questionable part is the conclusion made about the unacceptable situation. You can hire Smile HVAC for furnace red tag removal in Ontario.


Homeowners can rightfully question the technician’s call to issue a red tag on their appliance. This is based on the fact that there are cases where a furnace gets red-tagged without thorough inspection and analysis of the combustion properties. Therefore, it pays to have a second opinion from a trusted service that can help in the removal of the tag or give advice on the best option, whether to repair or replace the appliance.