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Energy Efficient Boiler Maintenance Can Save Money

Investing in energy-efficiency makes good business sense. That is why every building owner should carefully consider whether their boilers are operating efficiently. Making small adjustments to boiler systems or installing energy efficient boilers can save hundreds of dollars per year on utility bills. The upfront costs of improving a boiler system can be partly offset by Questar Gas company’s cash rebates.

Boiler Basics
Boilers are used to produce steam or hot water, both of which are energyintensive processes. The heated water or steam is usually used to provide heat for industrial processes, building space heating or domestic water heating. A building’s boiler system represents a large capital investment for the building owner. Boiler systems should be regularly maintained in order to keep the building running smoothly and efficiently and protect the initial capital investment. Often times, boiler systems are not maintained until there is a problem or something breaks down.

boilerIdentifying potential problems and repairing them before a breakdown is critical in maintaining building performance and occupant comfort throughout the heating season. Poorly maintained boilers operate inefficiently, contribute to higher monthly utility bills, and generally must be replaced prematurely at considerable expense. Servicing a boiler on appropriate intervals can lengthen the lifetime of a boiler and save building owners a significant amount of energy and money.

Boiler Tune-Ups
Boilers consume tremendous amounts of energy. They can also waste energy if there are poor draft/gas controls, dirty burner tips, or fouled heat exchanger surfaces. Getting a qualified specialist to tune the boiler for peak efficiency will result in natural gas savings throughout the winter heating season.Boiler tune-ups may involve the following:

• Draft control to ensure complete combustion of the fuel

• Analyzing and optimizing the combustion air intake for fuel input/air input measures

• Cleaning the fire-side heat exchanger to reduce buildup of combustion gases

• Sealing the combustion chamber

• Cleaning the burners, pilot assembly and/or blower motor

• Inspecting and testing all relays and controls

• Replacing filters and nozzles

Boiler Outdoor Air Reset Controls
Installing controls on boilers can be a cost-effective way of saving energy in buildings. Generally, as the outdoor-air temperature rises, the need for heating in the building decreases. Energy can be saved if the boiler temperature setpoint is lowered during periods of warmer weather. Not only does this increase boiler efficiency, but it also improves comfort by providing a better match between boiler output and space heating loads. Boiler outdoor air reset controls, in turn, result in a more productive working environment and lower utility bills.

When considering the operating costs of your building, remember that maintaining and upgrading the boiler system can save you money. Also, check with local utilities about boiler rebates to reduce the upfront capital cost of boiler upgrades. This will optimize your overall building performance and provide long-term, cost-effective savings.

For more information about energy efficiency, technical assistance, and how to take advantage of rebates for natural gas equipment, contact Questar Gas Company about their ThermWise program at ThermWise.com or 800-323-5517. Additional resources and incentives may be available for electric equipment by visiting rockymountainpower.net/utsave.

 

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