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Inspecting a water tube boiler

Ever wondered what a boiler inspector gets to see on the job? An average day for our team is anything but average. 

On the docket for inspection today? A rental water tube boiler. Come take a look!

This water tube boiler requires feed water, natural gas and electricity to be piped to it. It is mounted on a Lowboy trailer, which allows the boiler to be lowered to the ground to assist the operators and mechanics. The grey box (towards the center of the photo) is where 480 volt 3 phase power is applied to the boiler, and the large square-shaped box stores and protects all of the electrical controls for the boiler and burner controls.

From another angle, you can see the gauges across the top of the board that show gas, feed water, steam, pressure and temperature. The silver cylinder in this picture is the air cleaner for the blower for the burner, the yellow pipe is the gas fuel train for the boiler and the black pipe is the gas piping made on-site. The left hand side of the boiler has the electronic controls with the switches and indicator lights. This boiler receives 20 psi natural gas and lowers it down to 15 psi for the burner to operate properly.

From the top of the boiler, you can see the relief valves, which are shipped separately from the boiler. They can be disassembled to be sent for testing and cleaning and will have certification paperwork and seals that prove their maintenance. You can see this boiler has the ability to add a third relief valve. 

See the thick vertical silver cylinder with the sight glass attached to it? It’s the primary water level controller. The sight glass shows the operator the boiler’s water level through visual indication and uses a series of different lengths of metal rods (through conductivity to the water) to tell the computer what the water level of the boiler is. These rods control specific functions of the boiler controls, such as opening the boiler feed water valves, allowing the burner to operate and sounding alarms if the water is too high or too low. All the other piping on this side of the boiler is for a low volume, low pressure steam reducing station. This would be used for steam tracing to prevent freezing in the winter.

If you find this interesting, take a look at our careers page. We are always looking for great people to add to our team! 

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