When you live in New York City, a building’s boiler is often the key to heat and comfort during the winter. However, when they finally go bad, they often do so without any warning and can even explode and cause severe damage to everything around them. Keeping your Brooklyn boiler in good working order can not only keep you comfortable, but it can also save you money in the long run.
Continue reading to learn more about boiler maintenance in Brooklyn, including its many benefits and some DIY tips to keep your boiler in tip-top shape! If you have any questions or are ready to schedule service, reach out to the Brooklyn heating experts at Petri Plumbing & Heating today!
Making sure your boiler system is ready for winter, or fall, should be an annual commitment. Our boiler experts offer economical in-home consultations to diagnose and fix any potential problems.
An inspection and tune-up can ensure that big problems don’t grow out of small ones. We can replace worn-out controls, valves, or piping, find and fix oil leaks, and replace or repair worn-out venting systems.
A simple annual tune-up can also save tremendous amounts on your energy bill, eliminate unexpected repairs, and, most importantly, prevent safety hazards. The Petri Plumbing and Heating team recommends an early tune-up for the following reasons:
During an annual boiler tune-up, filters will be changed, the unit will be cleaned and mechanical parts will be lubricated resulting in better operating efficiency. The less work it takes for the unit to reach desired temperatures during heating season, the less impact it will have on the monthly energy bill.
More than 40% of boilers that fail during fall and winter will do so on the first day below freezing. By identifying and correcting any issues that may have developed or worsened since last winter, untimely failures can be avoided. Early attention to such hidden problems can eliminate costly repairs.
As dust, pet dander, and other small debris cycle through the system, the filters work to remove as much of it as possible. When filters are changed and the system is cleaned during a tune-up, it prevents these small particles from continuing to cycle throughout the household and invading living spaces.
A faulty system or clogged flue can result in improper ventilation and the dangerous presence of carbon monoxide. During a tune-up, technicians will inspect and correct any issues that could lead to carbon monoxide leaks, fires, explosions and any other safety hazards that can arise due to negligence.
Many manufacturers’ warranties actually require proof of annual maintenance before paying repair reimbursements. Reading all of the fine print and acting accordingly can save hundreds in repair fees or even thousands if a full replacement unit is necessary.
While scheduling a professional inspection is recommended, there are some steps you can take to help take care of your boiler and prepare it for winter.
Simply turning on your boiler for 10 to 15 minutes a few times throughout the summer is an underrated measure. Boilers can seize up if not turned on regularly. Turning on the boiler also helps ensure the components are working properly.
Inspecting your boiler’s flame can also provide insight into how well it is operating. The flame should be a clear blue. If the flame looks smoky or yellow, contact a heating professional. With winter breathing down our necks, the last thing you need is for your boiler to go out on one of the coldest days of the year.
A boiler can leak from a number of areas, including the vent pipe, chimney, and heat exchanger. If an area of your boiler is sealed, make sure that seal is still intact.
If a boiler’s water levels get too low, it won’t be able to deal with the extreme heat it can produce. Without the proper amount of water, a boiler can literally melt itself away and many new models come pre-equipped with automatic trip switches to ensure that doesn’t happen. Make sure yours has one and it’s functioning properly.
For older boilers, draining the tank can help remove mineral deposits and rust that collect over time. Your boiler will have a drain valve and supply valve, and it’s important not to forget about draining the expansion tank as well. It’s advised to have a tune-up done at the same time. Because the water will be very hot, it’s best to have a professional plumber drain your boiler properly.
Air can often get trapped in your home’s radiators, which can cause them to not heat up in the way they are intended. Bleeding them regularly releases the air and keeps them in good working condition.
Adding a chemical called an inhibitor to your boiler system can prevent it from building up rust, limescale, and debris. Because boilers use hot water piped through metal to heat your home, sludge can build up in the system, which can create corrosion. A magnetic filter can also help you prevent corrosion because it attracts the metallic debris in the system and filters it out. An inhibitor and magnetic filter system work best when used together.
It’s a good idea to turn on your heating system before the weather gets too cold so you can check your radiators for cold spots. This is normally caused by trapped air. If they are cold at the bottom, you may need to bleed them to remove the air; however, cold spots could be the start of more serious issues like a sludge buildup that can lead to a breakdown of your boiler system.
Standing water that is produced during the condensing process can cause pipes to freeze and can cause your boiler to stop working. Keeping your pipes warm with the proper amount of insulation can help you avoid this issue.
If your boiler loses pressure, its efficiency decreases. Your boiler’s installation guide usually has some tips on how to top up its pressure. However, if the pressure is too high, the culprit might be a leaky pressure valve, which will need to be repaired.
Since carbon monoxide typically has no smell, the best way to ensure the safety of your family’s well-being is to install an alarm that can detect carbon monoxide leaks.
Maintaining your boiler and its components may be required to stay within your warranty requirements, but is also encouraged to keep it running efficiently and safely. A Brooklyn boiler expert will need to clean the appliance, inspect it to see if any repairs are needed, and calibrate it to operate properly.
Here’s what you can also expect from a Petri Plumbing and Heating boiler inspection:
Keeping your boiler maintained is the key to keeping it from going out with a bang.
Although home boilers can usually be repaired before replacement is necessary, should the need arise, Petri Plumbing is BAXI certified in boiler installation. With the older home boilers only running at 50 to 60 percent efficiency, it might make sense to take advantage of the newest technology available in new boiler systems.
The latest models are very energy-efficient and can lower your heating costs. Why stay cold with an older boiler and pay high utility bills for the privilege?
Boiler heating systems are complicated and need an inspection at least once a year by a professional. An amateur technician can make an expensive mess of things that requires a professional to sort out. Rely on the professionals to answer your questions about the advantages of repairing or replacing your system. Petri Plumbing is certified to repair or replace Viessmann, Baxi, Noritz, Navien, Bosch, and other tankless boilers. Petri Plumbing is also certified to repair or replace your standard atmospheric boilers, such as Burnham, Weil McLain, New Yorker, Slant/Fin, and H.B. Smith.
Don’t wait until the winter to find out that the boiler system in your Brooklyn or NYC home isn’t working at its best. Call the Brooklyn home boiler experts at Petri Plumbing & heating and have one of our boiler professionals help you determine the best course of action.