Do the boiler house walkabout

The boiler house is the engine of any steam system. Make sure yours is in good working order with a stroll around to check that vital maintenance and testing is being regularly performed.
By Spirax Sarco December 22, 2014

The boiler house is the engine of any steam system. Make sure yours is in good working order with a stroll around to check that vital maintenance and testing is being regularly performed. The boiler house is the engine of any steam system. Make sure yours is in good working order with a stroll around to check that vital maintenance and testing is being regularly performed. It’s also a good idea to look for ways to improve boiler house operations. Remember, the cost of even the simplest upgrade could be recovered in just a few months.

Here’s a brief checklist to get you started:

  • Check that all statutory daily and weekly tests of boiler water level alarms are being performed and recorded properly.
  • Consider installing a boiler water high level alarm. Too high water levels in the boiler can cause wet and dirty steam to contaminate your process.
  • Check that the feedtank is being heated to the right temperature. Heating the tank to 185°F or 194°F will drive off dissolved oxygen, saving water treatment chemicals.
  • Is a deaerator head fitted to the feedtank? If not, fit on because it efficiently combines cold make-up water, flash steam and hot condensate and can save you lots of energy.
  • Check the feedtank is vented to prevent pressure build-up. It’s best to fit a maintenance-free stainless steel vent head.
  • Review water treatment records. Look for hardness slippage through the water softener, contamination of the condensate return and correct chemical dosing.
  • Check for excessive steam venting from the boiler feedtank or condensate return set. It could indicate leaking steam traps.
  • Check the rate of boiler blowdown. If automatic blowdown is not fitted, consider installing a system as it will almost certainly be more efficient than manual control.
  • Check the boiler gauge glass is not damaged. If it is, replace it immediately.

Content provided by Spirax Sarco. Originally published in Steam News Volume 4 Issue 4. Edited by Anisa Samarxhiu, Digital Project Manager, CFE Media, asamarxhiu@cfemedia.com