To increase heat transfer and the efficiency of the boiler’s operation, soot buildup in the boiler tubes and sections should be removed on a monthly basis. In addition, before and after the heating season, a complete major cleaning of the entire heating system should be performed.
Set up a maintenance contract with a reputable Vancouver plumber and boiler repair company. With a maintenance contract, you will receive scheduled boiler cleanings and guidance in measuring the boiler’s efficiency. When a consistent relationship is developed with your boiler contractor, you will be assured that emergency repairs are handled promptly.
Keep the interior of your boilers clean. If tubes and sections are free of soot, the boiler fires less frequently, therefore using less oil. The more a burner fires, the more fuel is used.
Keep you heating systems and controls clean. As soot continues to build up in the tubes or sections, it inevitably spills out and invades controls and other sensitive equipment areas. Not only does this cause needless repairs and costs, but it often occurs at unpredictable times. Valves too, must be kept clean if they are to operate properly. As you prepare you boiler for the heating season, wipe down the burner parts and sweep the boiler room clean.
Always begin your annual maintenance check in the spring and summer seasons. These are the best times to complete needed welding and refractory repairs and replacements before the next heating season begins. Your inspection program should include:
- Check for leaks in goose-necks, mud legs, stay bolts, horizontal and vertical seams and tube replacements.
- check for disintegrating refractory in the combustion chamber(s), repair or replacement of refractory may be needed.
- Re gasket all front, rear and chamber doors to prevent leaks.
- Replace all broken studs and bolts on all doors.
Overhaul the burners. Inspect regularly the color of the burner’s flame. It offers telling signs of oil and air mixture problems. If the boiler is giving off a dark orange or black smoke, there is too much oil and too little air. If the flame is very pale, then there is usually too much air and too little oil. Also conduct a combustion test to determine the fuel efficiency. Check belt motors and replace them if worn. Check the accuracy of your fuel oil gauge, and finally calibrate necessary controls.
Maintain a boiler log on a continuous basis. A log serves as the basis for assessing how your boiler is running and what is being done to keep it in good shape. The log should be maintained on a daily, weekly and monthly basis so that annual cost projections for fuel and maintenance costs may be accurately calculated.
Make some final heating system checks:
- Record stack temperatures. Rising stack temperatures may indicate increased soot, poor efficiency and potential ignition or burner failure
- Blow down the low water cut off and check the water feeder and gauge glass
- Check out return lines, flush and clean out mud legs
- Check the air vents on all the mains, risers and radiators in every room, office, apartment etc.
Getting The Most Out of Your Boiler
Annual boiler upkeep is a key element of making certain hot water system will last for at least as long as it was designed to. If you’re not comfortable when it comes to conducting any of the maintenance tasks yourself, then get an expert heating technician to visit to carry out these checks on your behalf. Such checks aren’t usually all that expensive and are undoubtedly well worth the fee to make sure that your system will work continuously and at peak performance.
Guidelines for Boiler Maintenance
Boiler maintenance a bit tricky, as each boiler is set up in a different way. There are only a few general maintenance guidelines that are relevant for most hot water boilers. The advice below is from a library of articles by Energy Star, which happens to be a good resource where you are able to find out about various heating topics for your home, including helpful energy-saving tips.
- Release pockets of air by opening valves and bleeding radiators. When the water is flowing steadily, you’ll know that you have let all the unwanted air escape
- Oil the water pump to facilitate smooth performance and stop the motor getting overheated
- Check the expansion tank to ensure that it has the right level of water to allow for expansion
- Clean grime and dirt from the pump to ensure the efficient transfer of heat
- After bleeding radiators, check out the pressure gauge and temperature and preserve your boiler’s proper water levels.
It is a smart idea to have your heating system maintained annually by an accredited heating contractor.
One local plumbing and heating contractor we like to recommend is;
Pioneer Plumbing & Heating Inc