Preparing Cooling Towers and Heating Boilers For Winter Operation: Part 2

HEATING BOILER STARTUP CHECKLIST:

Have a competent service representative disassemble the low-water cutoff and makeup water feeding devices.  All parts should be thoroughly cleaned and reconditioned as required, then tested before the boiler is put into regular service.

  1. Burner equipment should be cleaned and adjusted to give maximum efficiency.  This can save fuel dollars.
  2. The safety/relief valve should be tested for freedom of operation.  This is of primary importance.  The boiler must not be fired if the safety/relief valve is inoperative or otherwise defective.
  3. All pressure and temperature controls and gauges should be checked for satisfactory operation and adjusted or replaced as necessary.  The water-level gauge must be cleaned to indicate the proper water level at all times.
  4. Any leaking pipes or fittings located on the boiler or anywhere throughout the heating system should be repaired or replaced to prevent a loss of water.
  5. Water lines exposed to freezing temperatures should be insulated to prevent freeze-up.  Steam and condensate return lines should be insulated to prevent unnecessary loss of heat.  Such action will reduce fuel bills and eventually more than pay for itself.
  6. All mechanical equipment, such as fans and pumps, should be checked for smooth operation and proper lubrication.
  7. A suitable record of boiler operation should be established and maintained throughout the season.
  8. The boiler heating surfaces should be cleaned of all deposits.  Dirty internal surfaces not only waste fuel and dollars but also can lead to the burning, bulging, cracking and eventual explosion of the boiler.
  9. If the boiler is of a type designed to permit cleaning of the water surfaces, this should be done and, where necessary, a suitable chemical treatment should be used to minimize new buildup of scale and to prevent corrosion.

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 By Mark Botsford, CWT