Loss Control Insights for Schools
12 Tips For Boiler Startup Season
It’s that time of year when those warm days of summer begin transitioning to cool mornings and evenings. For many schools, that means heating boilers will begin firing up. Unfortunately, that also means some of these boilers will experience issues, which could result in a breakdown. These equipment failures often mean expensive claims and may even necessitate a school shutdown.
Boilers and heating systems at facilities where proper lay–up procedures were followed will most likely have a smooth transition into the heating season. Those that left the systems unattended all summer may or may not. As you prepare to start up boilers for the colder months ahead, keep the following maintenance tips in mind to help you avoid the most common boiler heating problems.
- Have a competent service firm disassemble the low water cut–off and make–up water feeding devices. All parts should be thoroughly cleaned and reconditioned as required, then tested before the boiler is put into regular service
- Keep all burner equipment clean and adjusted for maximum efficiency
- Make sure the boiler heating surfaces, firebox, ash pit, casing and ducts are free of deposits
- Test the safety/relief valve for freedom of operation. Be sure to also test the valves monthly while the boiler is in service
- Clean the water spaces if the boiler is designed to allow for this and where necessary, apply a suitable chemical treatment to prevent corrosion
- Check all pressure and temperature controls and gauges to ensure they are operating correctly
- Clean the water level gauge glass
- Repair and replace any leaking pipes or fittings located on the boiler or anywhere throughout the heating system
- Make sure any water lines exposed to freezing temperatures are insulated
- All mechanical equipment, such as fans and pumps, should be well–lubricated
- Use a boiler log to help monitor your heating boiler operations
- Keep the boiler room clean and dry
For more information on boiler operation and maintenance check out Hartford Steam Boiler's resources for K-12 schools.