Nothing can be more frustrating than a non-functioning boiler on a cold day. Fortunately, noticeable changes in boiler performance precede most mechanical failures. If you notice a change in boiler performance such as new noises, smells, rising stack temperatures or continually resetting safety devices, call your boiler professional for help.
Although unexpected mechanical failures do occur, it is likely that one of the boiler’s safety or operational devices is preventing your boiler from starting. Most safety devices have manual reset buttons that need to be reset before boiler operation can continue. Continual resetting of safety devices is an indication of unsafe operating conditions. Prompt attention by your boiler technician is required
Causes of Boiler Room & Boiler Plant Room Accidents :
- Boiler systems are designed for safety and efficiency. The key to safe boiler operation is the operator. Armed with knowledge about boiler systems and maintenance the boiler operator can ensure years of safe, reliable service.
- History has shown that without proper operation and maintenance, boiler conditions and safety deteriorate, causing potential hazards due to neglect and misunderstanding.
- Routine maintenance is well within the ability of most boiler operators. Boiler tune up and repairs however are best left to trained professionals. Understanding when to turn to qualified professionals for assistance is an operators first responsibility. Here are some problem areas where trained professionals are needed:
- Leaking pressure relief valves
- Continuous make up water to boiler
- Steam leaks or steam vented from condensate tank (steam systems)
- High stack temperatures (greater than 350 degrees)
- Insufficient heat to building
- Condensate dripping down stack or out the front of the boiler
- Constantly resetting controller, high pressure or temperature limits or low water cut off switches
- Common Boiler Room Accidents (Include but not limited to)
- Dry Fire Accidents: Dry fire accidents are also called boiler meltdowns. These accidents occur when the boiler is allowed to operate without adequate water in the boiler. Functioning low water cutoffs are essential to preventing dry fire accidents. Boiler damage can run from severe buckling and deforming of the boiler to complete meltdown or potential boiler explosion.
- Excessive Pressure Accidents: Excessive pressure is potentially the most lethal form of boiler accident. These accidents occur when the boiler can no longer contain the excessive pressure allowed to build in the boiler. The operator control, high pressure limit, and the pressure relief valve need to fail before these accidents can occur. Excessive pressure accidents, even in small boilers, have been known to completely destroy a building.
- Fuel Related Accidents: Fuel related accidents usually occur when the operator fails to purge combustible gases from the fire box before ignition is attempted.
- Never bypass safety devices with jumper wires to restart your boiler.
- Unintended ignition of unburned combustion gases in the fire box is possible.
- Leaking fuel valves can also be the cause of these accidents. If the operator notices any gas odor the boiler should be shut down and the fuel supplier called immediately.