Starting Up Your Boiler

Nov 30, 2023 | Boiler Water

Managing boiler run time and off time is critical for maximizing boiler efficiency. You also need to understand the proper boiler start-up. Unfortunately, a boiler start-up or shutdown procedure isn’t as simple as switching the power button, as you would for a computer. Navigating through these processes with boiler best practices should be integrated into your daily boiler maintenance routine. Follow a step-by-step guide to safely recommission an offline boiler, thus maximizing its efficiency and extending its lifespan. Here are a couple of important points you should keep in mind when starting up a boiler.

How do you start up a boiler?

There are many steps involved in the boiler startup procedure. These include:

  1. First, you must turn on the burner switch and make sure the pilot lights appropriately.
  2. Next, you should make sure the boiler vent and drain are open. This is important for bleeding any air that may be present.
  3. Following this, you must open the main steam stop valves.
  4. Check all valves and place in their startup position.
  5. Open the sight gauge and water column high- and low-water shut-off valves. Make sure the water level safety controls are blown out.
  6. Close the bottom blowdown valves, then open the upper drum vent valves.
  7. Start filling with soft water.
  8. Manually inject the boiler treatment chemicals including oxygen scavenger, scale and corrosion inhibitors, so that the chemicals are added with the fill water.
  9. Once full to the operating level, open the fuel system and fire the boiler. Carefully bring the pressure up to 10-15 PSIG with the vent valve open. The boiler’s warm-up curve should be strictly followed. The standard warm-up curve for a typical boiler is not to increase the boiler water temperature over 100°F per hour. Check your manufacturer’s guidelines.
  10. When the pressure reaches between 75 and 85 percent of the system line pressure, open the non-return valve.
  11. Test the safety valve to make sure it is operating appropriately.
  12. Increase the boiler pressure gradually, allowing the boiler to acclimate to the current environment.
  13. Collect a boiler water sample and test for the proper chemical concentrations. Adjust as needed.

How does this improve boiler performance?

It is true that it will take you a few minutes to go through these steps; however, you must make sure you work the steps appropriately to properly take care of your boiler. If you try to rush through the steps, you could place a lot of stress on the internal components of the boiler. As a result, you may end up with serious issues that could lead to a major repair bill. Furthermore, this could also create a significant safety hazard. These factors prove even more reason to make sure you go through the start-up and shutdown boiler processes appropriately.

Take Ownership of your Water Treatment Outcomes

Your boiler system has a lot of internal components that require routine maintenance to ensure perfect harmony. If you do not start or shut down your boiler correctly, you put your boiler system and facility at major risk for complete failure. Buckman Digital Water can develop a startup SOP for your boiler systems. Powered by Ackumen, we can also help develop an optimum water treatment program to extend the life of your equipment, provide safety for your employees, and prevent unnecessary downtime and maintenance expenses. We offer an innovative approach to water management by fully leveraging digital to the extreme. Our unique, comprehensive water management system delivers actionable insights and recommendations to your mobile device, 24/7 monitoring and analysis by a team of water experts, a safer chemical offering and management plan, and service when and how you need it.