How To Troubleshoot Industrial Boiler Problems

Friday, April 5th, 2019
proper boiler maintenance is key to the efficiency of your boiler system

No matter how much care you take in maintaining your industrial boiler, it will encounter issues and will need the occasional inspection. These machines are impressive because they deal with extreme pressures and temperatures. You should not take boiler safety and maintenance for granted. This post will go over how to troubleshoot your boiler and some common reasons why it may leak.

Review the boiler interface

If your industrial boiler is newer, it will likely have a user interface (“UI”). Whenever you experience pressure problems or other issues, you should immediately consult the UI to see if there is anything immediately apparent. Anything that reads out of the ordinary is a key clue about the source of the problem.

Monitor the systems

Another good way to troubleshoot your boiler is to monitor its systems. These machines often come with a monitoring system to alert your technicians if there are any readings outside the normal range. You should consult with your industrial boiler supplier to determine if you can add a monitoring system if your equipment doesn’t have one.

Keep up with maintenance

Regular maintenance is a great option for preventing issues and troubleshooting your boiler. The issue with relying on the UI and monitoring system is that it only alerts you once a problem has arisen. These systems cannot anticipate what is going to break, so they only report what is already broken. The best and only way to predict potential issues is through comprehensive inspection and maintenance.

Check the water quality

You should monitor the quality of the water you use in your boiler. This equipment can only produce good steam if the water it is using is also good. If your boiler is working with water that is full of minerals and other contaminants (hard water), it will damage the interior and reduce efficiency. Hard water increases the scaling on the inside of your equipment and can drop efficiency by up to 25 percent. To prevent these issues, test your water regularly.

Cleaning the inside of the boiler

Even with an emphasis on water quality, you will still need to clean your boiler’s interior. Scaling reduces the efficient movement of water, so you need to remove any debris on a regular basis. You can clean the inside of your equipment using a brush at least once a year.

Keep an operations log

You should also keep an operations log to track inspections, cleanings, parts replacement, and any issues. The operations log ensures that you are inspecting and replacing the right parts of the boiler and catching any potential maintenance issues. Your records should track water temperature, pressure, and other efficiency-related measurements as well. You can use this data to plot trends and anticipate if a problem will happen again to troubleshoot your boiler.

Get regular industrial boiler inspections

Finally, you should conduct routine inspections of your boiler. Develop a schedule, use the log, and have a professional company check out your equipment. Inspections can help you catch corrosion and other issues before they blow up into major problems.

Common causes of leaking boilers

One of the issues boiler owners face the most is leaks. Your equipment usually leaks for one of four common reasons, although there could be more. These reasons include the following.

  • Heat pump issues: The heat pump usually leaks because one of the seals is blown.
  • Air vents: The auto-air vent often leaks water because it is activated by pressure, but this is not always a major issue.
  • Boiler connection problems: The connections are a weak point in the system, often because they are assembled incorrectly.
  • Corrosion on the heat exchanger: Finally, if you see water pooling beneath your boiler, that is usually a sign that the heat exchanger has corroded. You have to shut down the entire system to get at the heat exchanger.

Industrial boiler maintenance in Amarillo

Do you need an expert to diagnose and get your boiler running again? Contact the professionals at Allen’s Tri-State Mechanical in Amarillo, Texas today. You can reach us at (806) 376-8345 or Send Us an Email to learn more about our Industrial Boiler services.