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Is Your Home Ready for Winter?

by | Sep 20, 2021

The bitter chill of winter is right around the corner, and with it comes potential issues for keeping your home warm during the coldest months in Grand Rapids, MI. We’ve created a detailed checklist covering what to look for and what you need to do before Jack Frost arrives!

Seasonal Issues

Winter brings with it some unique stresses and potential issues for your home heating system that may affect your water heater as well as your boiler and furnace. No matter what system your home uses for heating, here are some potential risks of putting off heating maintenance before winter:

  • Uneven airflow
  • Inoperable pilot light
  • Thermostat issues
  • Frozen pipes (which can have an effect on all heating)
  • Leaks and other hazards

Proper boiler maintenance and furnace tune-ups prevent issues and reveal minor problems before they have a snowball effect and damage your overall system. After all, no one wants to have the heat go out in the middle of a frigid Grand Rapids, MI, winter night! 

The Importance of Heating Maintenance

Maintaining a heating system is a necessary part of homeownership. For the best type of maintenance, you should call seasoned professionals.

Regular maintenance by a heating professional will ensure that your system is completely ready for winter and doesn’t give out when you need it most. During Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing’s heating maintenance appointments, we take the following steps to ensure your system is in good order:

  • Fix loose connections
  • Test airflow
  • Calibrate all thermostats
  • Clean and/or change air filters
  • Inspect ductwork

These are issues in any home heating system that you want to address before a heating emergency hits. Proper maintenance will help you weather the winter months and make you feel confident your heating will last.

Furnace and Boiler Maintenance 

Furnaces and boilers do the heavy lifting (heat-wise) in your home. So performing necessary maintenance will help take some weight off your HVAC system, extend its life, and reduce costs for boiler repair and furnace repair down the road. 


A properly conducted furnace inspection in Grand Rapids, MI, will consider all the parts of your system that may require maintenance. This inspection is your first line of defense against furnace issues. 

A technician will check your filters and inspect the fuel line and pilot light systems. They will also calibrate your gas pressure to ensure it is running at the right measurements.

During the professional furnace inspection, your technician may suggest a furnace repair from Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing to address any issues that arose during inspection. Getting these issues solved quickly and expertly will keep your system running properly for years to come.


Boiler maintenance has some unique and essential differences from other heating systems. A properly maintained boiler vastly reduces the risk of carbon monoxide leaks and poisoning. Maintenance will ensure that your boiler is venting carbon monoxide outdoors as it should. The appointment may also reveal any blockages in your heat exchanger that need addressing.

A frequent requirement of boiler warranties is regular maintenance of your boiler. By keeping up a maintenance schedule, you ensure that your boiler’s warranty will be honored in the chance that you need a replacement or more extensive boiler repairs down the road.

Boiler Repair

Before winter hits, there are some tell-tale signs that you may need boiler repairs, even if you keep a well-maintained system. When you know what to watch out for, you can catch and resolve boiler issues right away, saving yourself time, stress, and money. Below are some signs to keep an eye out for.

  1. Rising Utility Costs

If you find that your energy bill is going up while usage of your system has remained the same, it could be a sign that your boiler is getting old. Old appliances will require more upkeep and cause your home to overuse energy. New boiler systems can cut your gas utility cost by 20-50% or more.

  1. Your Boiler Whistles

Whistling happens when your boiler’s water temperature reaches too high a level, just like a tea kettle. The buildup of residues and mineral deposits due to hard water can lead to an unsafe pressure level inside your boiler. Proper boiler treatments can help mitigate this and help with the performance

  1. Issues with the Pilot Light

If you notice an issue with your pilot light or ignition, it can be a sign of boiler malfunction. 

  1. Leaks

This is the big one. Boiler leaks can quickly lead to system shutdown and property damage if left unaddressed. Not to mention leaks are totally unsafe! Generally, even the best technicians can’t repair a severe boiler leak. In most cases, you’ll need to replace your entire unit, the professional’s Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing offer same day and next day boiler replacements.

Proper maintenance on a schedule and addressing issues in a timely manner will ensure that your boiler will continue to run flawlessly during the cold winter months. Putting off repairs can lead to even more significant and more dangerous problems later on. If you fix them when they arise instead, you’ll keep your home safe and comfortable during the Grand Rapids, MI winter. 

Steps to Take for Winter

Keeping on top of heater maintenance and repairs will ensure that your boiler, furnace, and water heater are mechanically sound for the winter. However, you can take a few additional steps to make your home as comfortable as possible during the winter months.

Make Sure You Have the Right Filter

Your filter helps your home circulate the cleanest air possible. It also keeps your system working its best. Call an expert team like Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing to make sure you have the right filter for your unit. We can also change or clean your filter to optimize its efficiency.

Get Your Vents Winter-ready

Dusting or cleaning off your vents before turning your heater on will keep your air cleaner when you begin using your system. Make sure nothing is obstructing the airflow, and open your vents completely. 

Remove Clutter

Before testing out your heater, make sure there are no boxes or furniture near or on top of your unit. These can pose a fire hazard, so to keep you and your home safe, keep everything clear.  

Turn it Up!

Hiring a professional to complete an inspection and maintenance plan is the best way to ensure your heater is fit for the chill. Is your thermostat ready for another heating season? The thermostat is a small part in your heating system, but when it’s not working neither is the heat.

Following these steps is a good starting point for your home before winter hits. Last, but most certainly not least, you should…

Schedule a Maintenance Appointment!

The best line of defense against the winter cold is having your Grand Rapids, MI, heating system inspected and maintained by the professionals at Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing.  We’re your famous “HVAC service near me!”

We offer licensed, insured work and a knowledge base to handle all of your furnace, boiler, and water heater needs no matter what the weather. Our goal is to work as quickly and courteously as possible to finish your project in time for winter.

Proudly offering around-the-clock emergency services and a wide range of financing options, we here at Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling, Plumbing will make sure you get the work done to keep your home warm during the winter! Schedule an appointment with one of our certified technicians today!