Preparing Your Boiler for Cold Weather

No one wants their heating system to fail in the middle of winter. With icy temperatures on the way, it’s essential to make sure that your boiler is prepared to get you through chilly weather for months on end. Use these tips to maintain your boiler's efficiency and prevent problems from heavy-duty use.

1. Clear space for your boiler.

If you’ve been using the space around your boiler for storage, make sure to clear away any boxes or other items that might be crowding the equipment. Remember: to operate safely and efficiently, a boiler needs room to breathe!

2. Check the flame color.

Your gas boiler’s flame should burn blue. If the flame is burning orange or yellow, it’s best to contact a technician to fix the issue immediately. Yellow or orange flames indicate that there is not the correct proportion of gas and air in your boiler, which can lead to carbon monoxide production.

3. Unblock the flue and vents.

Several things can clog a boiler flue, including leaves, pinecones, birds’ nests, and animal carcasses. When gases are not allowed to ventilate through the flue, not only does your boiler operate less efficiently, but all those gases end up inside your home. If your boiler is not igniting gas correctly, carbon monoxide may be among those gases.

4. Check your boiler’s water level.

To prevent serious problems, make sure the water level remains above the manufacturer's suggested level at all times. If your boiler’s water level has dropped below that recommended amount, a plumbing leak is probably the cause.

5. Inspect the boiler overflow pipe.

If you find dripping water, then there might be a problem with the float valve (pressure release valve). When functioning correctly, this valve controls the tank’s water level. When it breaks or wears out, you’ll end up with a leaking overflow pipe.

6. Schedule pre-winter maintenance.

It’s important to get your boiler heating system professionally serviced to ensure that it lasts as long as possible and runs at top efficiency. During the appointment, an experienced HVAC technician will be able to clean and adjust your system’s more intricate components and test for critical issues, such as carbon monoxide leaks.

Learn more about how Morrison Plumbing, Heating and Air provides top-notch boiler maintenance in Belleville.

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