Your boiler works non-stop 24-hours-a-day 7-days-a-week. It continuously creates hot water and cycles thousands of times a year. All this wear and tear may lead to faults that could you leave you without the much-needed hot water for several days. Your boiler also has a complex system of safety devices that are designed to ensure that your boiler operates safely. These safety devices should be inspected and checked annually to ensure they work properly and that any malfunctioning safety devices are replaced. Just to give you an idea of how important having your boiler serviced is, let’s take a look at what a regular service includes.
The first very important check is related to the flue and its termination points. The flue routes carbon monoxide and the by-products of combustion safely to the outdoors where it naturally rises and dissipates into the atmosphere. Flues should be inspected to ensure that they are secure, tight and sealed. The termination point requires a safe path for these gases to exhaust.
The next inspection is related to the fuel system that feeds your boiler. Many times this fuel system is comprised of a pressurized natural gas or propane. This fuel supply piping needs to be inspected to ensure that it is not corroding and that all connections are leak free. This fuel system also has a multitude of safety devices that are designed to stop the flow of explosive gas into the structure should a failure occur in the combustion process. These safety devices will shut down the gas valve and stop the flow of gas. These devices can fail and an annual check is recommended.
The inspection then continues to ensure that the boiler will stop heating the water once it reaches the desired temperature. In a steam boiler, as water reaches its boiling point and begins to change into a gas, the volume of water that has now turned into steam will occupy 1, 700 times more space than if its just water. A hydronic boiler has another system of complex safety devices that will both prevent the water from over heating and then safely release the steam pressure if for some reason the boiler fails to stop heating at the desired water temperature. These safety devices are known as over limit switches and pressure release valves that should be tested every year to make sure they work properly.
The examination also includes an inspection of the heat exchanger, the burner, and the combustion fan, seals and ignition system to ensure that all of these are operating safely and at the highest efficiency possible. As your boiler burns fuel to heat the water, the mixture of gas to air controls how hot the burners operate to produce the most heating possible for every thermal unit of fuel used. This ratio of gas to air is adjustable and should be adjusted every year to maintain efficiency. The pressure of natural gas or propane feeding the boiler can change over time due to aging pressure control devices or small changes in pressure from the utility company.
As you can see, your boiler is a very complex system that works flawlessly everyday to heat your water efficiently. But with any mechanical device controls and safety devices can begin to fail and as such it should be inspected every year. The good news is that a boiler service will not break the budget. It’s a very affordable service that keeps your boiler operating safely and efficiently. This provides peace of mind and savings over the life of the boiler. Give Empire Heating & Air Conditioning a call at 404-294-0900 to schedule your much needed boiler service today. We service both hydronic and steam boiler systems.