Steam tip: Ensure that your boiler is operating at its best performance

There are many things you can do to ensure your boiler is operating optimally.


There are many things you can do to ensure your boiler is operating optimally. Listed below are a few tips to consider:

  1. Always run the boiler at its rated pressure.
  2. Do not run the boiler above its rated output. For consistency, steam boilers are rated to evaporate steam at atmospheric pressure and with a feedwater temperature of 212 F. If the boiler pressure is higher and the feedwater temperature is lower (which is always the case), then the boiler’s actual maximum output will be less than its rated output, typically derated by about 6% to 7%. You might see the boiler rated in terms of 11,025 lbs/hr. ‘From and At’ or ‘F & A’. Its maximum continuous rating will always be less.
  3. If designing a new steam system, ensure that the highest practical pressure is used to distribute the steam, and choose a boiler that operates at the same pressure.
  4. Keep the TDS of the boiler water within recommended limits. This can only be achieved realistically by automatic blowdown systems.
  5. Monitor the boiler water TDS and chemical constituency regularly to ensure the boiler water treatment is correct.
  6. Maintain the boiler feedwater at the highest practical temperature.
  7. Return as much condensate as possible from the plant to the feedtank.
  8. Ensure you recover heat from the TDS blowdown to feedtank.

Content provided by Spirax Sarco, originally published in Steam News Magazine.

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