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Thoughts on keeping your Beacon Hill condo warm for our Boston winters.

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Thoughts on keeping your Beacon Hill condo warm for our Boston winters.

It won’t be long now before we will need to fire up the furnace or boiler. Most years we end up turning on the heat before the middle of October. So far, this October has been very warm. Most Beacon Hill condos seems to stay warm during the day but the days are shorter and the nights are colder.

If you have a forced air furnace now is a great time to buy furnace filters. I usually buy enough to last through the winter.

Now is a good time to schedule a furnace or boiler inspection and tune-up. If the dang thing stops working on Christmas Eve or during a major cold spell getting it repaired is going to be expensive.

Usually, a tune-up isn’t expensive.


If you are a Boston Beacon Hill condo homeowner or live in a Boston Back Bay condo now would be a great time to have your boiler or furnace service, inspected and or tuned up.  You will start to notice local heating and cooling companies are advertising discounts for tune-ups. Some with pre-winter specials. Take advantage of it.

I see a lot of old furnaces in Beacon Hill and in Boston’s North End that have been well maintained. They really do last longer with regular maintenance. Personally, I am not a fan of the service plans but I am a fan of service.

There are homeowners who never get their furnace or boiler tuned, cleaned, inspected, or serviced and have never had a repair either.

If you are selling your Boston condo this fall or winter it is a good idea to have the furnace or boiler serviced and save the receipt or even tape it to the furnace. Buyers who are closing on homes this fall should either have the furnace tuned up or should make sure that the seller has already taken care of it.

A word of caution about HVAC contractors and companies. The same company that does the maintenance also sells and installs new units. Also, they like to put stickers with phone numbers on your furnace. We had a plumber come out last spring to fix a leak and even though the furnace wasn’t involved in the repair he put a “call us” sticker on it.

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In Boston, a city known for its cold/snow New England winters, late December and early January tend to bring some very low temperatures.

People who are moving into a Beacon Hill condo can expect temperatures in the teens and low 20s, particularly if the nighttime breezes from the Boston Common are flowing to the east. The temperature inside your Beacon Hill condo will depend on how it was built or converted. The hastier conversions are the most troublesome in this regard. You may see exposed windows and window frames only to realize climate control wasn’t part of the condo conversion project. Here are some ideas on how you can keep your Boston condo warm and toasty during the coldest days in Boston.

Portable Space Heaters

These devices are more advanced, safer, and more affordable than ever before, but you don’t want to run more than two at the same time in your condominium. Infrared space heaters tend to cost more, but they’re worth the investment. This solution should be temporary. You’ll always be better off with a furnace, heat pump, and proper insulation Beacon Hill building.

Gas Furnace

If your Boston condo is located within the area serviced by gas this is the best way to heat your Boston condo or any other dwelling is by means of a natural gas furnace. Keep in mind that a gas installation will also allow you to heat your water and operate your stove and oven, so this is a comprehensive long-term investment.

Heat Pumps

These HVAC devices are more common than gas furnaces in newer Beacon Hill condo conversions for various reasons, the most important of which is that they’re more affordable.  Heat pumps are now more eco-friendly than gas furnaces. As for maintenance, modern heat pumps are more efficient and don’t malfunction as often.

Proper Insulation

 In older Beacon Hill buildings it is common the find poorly insulated spaces will get cold come January 2020. The minimum amount of insulation required by the Boston building code may not be sufficient to keep your Beacon Hill condominium warm during the coldest nights. Moreover, older Beacon Hill buildings may have cracks and gaps around doors and windows that allow heat to escape and cold air to enter. If you start feeling cold drafts inside your condominium, look into installing weather stripping around all the windows and doors. Heavy curtains and thicker windowpanes can also help in this regard.

Even in the middle of winter, downtown Boston is one of the finest places to live, which is only one reason to consider investing in downtown Boston real estate. If you’re ready to find your perfect home in the downtown district of America’s Finest City, call on the professionals at Ford Realty to assist with your search. Give one of our friendly agents a call today at 617-595-3712

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