Monday, January 5, 2015

Common Causes of Boiler Explosion

Boilers are central to a house’s heating system, and a failing boiler has the potential to absolutely heat up your house—the wrong way. Recognize three common causes of boiler explosion and the safety measures you can implement for each.

Fuel-rich mixture. This allows the build-up of unburned fuel in high concentrations. The usual cause of this is the insufficient amount of air supplied relative to the fuel being burned. It would be best to purge thoroughly. However, never add air if there’s fire in the unit because that could trigger an explosion.

High oil viscosity. Too thick and poorly atomized oil could lead to high deposits of unburned oil at the furnace floor. For prevention, oil tips have to be clog-free; temperature must be right and the atomizing steam and fuel must be set at correct pressures.

High deposit of natural gas. Too much natural gas could get in the burner if the pressure control valve is not functioning well or if there’s unstable flame due to a plugged oil tip. Excessive gas in the combustor causes flame to weaken or die out. The weaker the flame, the more natural gas can flow in, resulting in a huge concentration of explosive unburned fuel-natural gas mixture in the boiler’s combustion chamber. The air blower should purge thoroughly so air is displaced from unburned gases until it loses its explosive potential. 

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