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When I converted from oil to gas heat, the contractors left the remote "emergency off" switch in the circuit. I've since been told that these are explicitly Not Recommended for gas furnaces.

Is that true?

If so,

  1. can I just remove the switch, splice the wires with wire nuts, slap a blank faceplate on the box (with a note on the inside surface of that plate explaining what was done) and call it good? Or

  2. would it need to be disconnected down where the switch loop connects to the boiler's power circuit?

  3. should I just continue to treat this as "mostly harmless" and ignore it, or put a "DO NOT TOUCH" label on it, or otherwise avoid mucking with something that is currently working?

Obviously my preference would be either for 3 or "it's fine as it is", but I'd sorta like to know what would be the least-effort but officially adequate solution.

2 Answers 2

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1) Not necessarily; depends on local codes. NYC code circa 2008 required it, and as a result I have one.

2c) 'It is fine as it is'. You can put some tape over the switch to discourage people from whacking it in the dark if you need to, and you can change the faceplate to indicate that it is now a 'Gas Burner Emergency Shutdown Switch'

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  • In fact that's exactly what I did -- labelmakers are useful tools -- but I wanted to make sure it wasn't going to cause some future inspector to go ballistic. (Well, yeah, if he did it'd be easy enough to fix then, but...) And it's mounted high enough on the wall to resist careless (or childish, or feline) activation.
    – keshlam
    Nov 24, 2014 at 2:10
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You could leave the switch as-is but then install one of various types of switch guards to prevent accidental switch setting changes. Here are a few examples...

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  • 'Tis a thought; I keep forgetting these are available. Thanks!
    – keshlam
    Nov 24, 2014 at 4:28

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