Project HEAT’s ON is a volunteer effort that was started in 1986 to service and repair the furnaces of elderly, disabled, and low-income homeowners. This will be the 29th year that hundreds of volunteer pipefitters from St. Paul Local #455, Minneapolis Local #539, and Rochester Local #6 work together with members of the Minnesota Mechanical Contractors Association (MMCA) to provide the needy with furnace repairs. It’s this cooperative effort with labor volunteering their skills and contractors donating the use of their trucks and parts that allow this program to continue.
This program helps community members, reduces the cost for government programs and since 1986 pipefitters and contractors in Minnesota have volunteered over 32,098 hours, helped 7,447 homeowners at an estimated value of $3,438,200.
When HEAT’S ON was first started it accomplished two things. First, we wanted to be good neighbors and help those who truly were in need of energy assistance by repairing, servicing, and cleaning furnaces, many of which were dangerous or even deadly. We worked closely with the community action programs (CAP) agencies (Minneapolis, Ramsey-Washington Counties, Mankato, Rochester, and St. Cloud) to identify those in need so that we could make their homes safer and also much more energy efficient. This not only provided a safer home but one with lower operating costs to those who could least afford higher fuel bills.
The second reason isn’t that far off from the first, and that is to bring awareness to all homeowners that there are inherent dangers when any fuel is being combusted in a home, and a seasonal check of the system is recommended. Furnaces don’t last forever no matter how good they are, and just like your car, they also require occasional cleaning, maintenance, and tune-ups to run properly, safely, and efficiently.
HEAT’s ON relies on the CAPs to furnish us with the names of those in need and for those homeowners this service is 100% free. We are able to service these homes due entirely to the hundreds of pipefitters who want to give back to their community by volunteering their skills and to the contractors who generously donate the parts and use of their equipment to complete necessary repairs. This is totally a home-grown national event that started here in Minnesota and we are proud to say it’s ours.
HEAT’s ON could not do all the work it does without the help of the Community Action Program who are constantly helping the needy throughout the state. We’d like to thank them for their continued partnership with HEAT’s ON.
Community Action Partnership of Ramsey-Washington Counties
450 N. Syndicate Street, St. Paul, MN 55104
Community Action of Minneapolis
2104 Park Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55407
Suburban Hennepin communities:
Community Action Partnership for Suburban Hennepin County
8800 Hwy. 7, Suite 401, St. Louis Park, MN 55426
Minnesota Valley Action Council
464 Raintree Rd, Mankato, MN 56001
St. Cloud communities:
700 W. St. Germain Street, St. Cloud, MN 56301
Olmsted Communities (Rochester – Austin):
ThreeRivers Community Action
1414North Star Drive, Zumbrota, MN 55992