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Iceni Magazine | December 11, 2019

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How to Ensure Proper Functioning of Your Boiler

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Boiler Systems provide heating for both home and commercial use. Natural Gas, Oil, Propane, or Electricity can be used for powering these systems which makes them very versatile, but like most things created; the ability of malfunctioning is there. Since the heat source comes from steam or hot water, having professional work done on the system is the best way to go, but if it’s just minor work that’s needed and you have some knowledge on the subject; repairs and maintenance can be done by owner.

Boilers are like any other product. As it gets older it’ll become less reliable over time. These systems become far less efficient, too, and burns larger amount of fuel which pulls money from your pocket. Compared to new boilers, older boilers are about 40% less efficient and becomes a drain on you and your home. That’s why it’s so important to keep them running as smooth as possible for as long as possible. New boilers come with some energy saving features and run at an efficiency of about 90%. Basic maintenance tests can be done by the owner whether it’s hot water, forced air, or steam units. Some benefits of proper maintenance are:

  1. Lower Heating Bills
  2. Helps You Save Money On Any Repair Cost
  3. Reduces Your Carbon Footprint
  4. Keeps You and Your Family Safe From A Hazardous Situation

Not in all cases, but during the cooler weather seasons of fall and winter is when these units seem to breakdown or malfunction. Preventive maintenance is a great way to start for any owner and it’s easy to do. Here are a few ideas:

  • Examine the vent pipe and chimney
  • Look for cracks and holes and make sure all areas are sealed
  • Check for any water leakage
  • Be extremely wary and vigilant of carbon monoxide
  • Try readjusting the controls of the boiler for peak performance

Keeping an eye open for any changes is the key because most of the boiler’s parts are prone to deterioration over time. If you have a really old model, some of the newer safety features won’t be built into the unit. In cases such as this, it’s best to call a professional.

Forced Air System Maintenance

  • Surely check the combustion chamber of the boiler
  • Try performing a carbon monoxide test
  • Place a Carbon Monoxide Detector in the same room for reassurance
  • Remove dust, corrosion, and sediments by checking the system’s blower
  • Oil parts and clean the blower system

Hot Water System Maintenance

  • Test both the high-limit control valve and pressure relief valve. Run your hand over the drain line to see it’s warm which means the valve is open. Raise the test lever valve and you should hear water running. Press the pilot button and if it doesn’t release, turn off your gas and then replace that valve
  • Check the pressure tank as it should be filled with air rather than water
  • Clean the boiler surface

Steam System Maintenance

  • Purchase a water testing kit for detecting corrosion and calcium
  • Remove sediment by draining water from the float chamber and boiler which improves heat exchange
  • Push the test button for testing low water cut-off and the (LED) lights should come on

Even basic maintenance is a bit frustrating and should be done with good knowledge of central heating boiler service, but for peace of mind, hire a professional service such as (UES) Unitary Engineering to handle all of your boiler, heating, and plumbing issues.

“An Ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure”

Article By Lauren Williamson

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