Facility Maintenance Decisions

Training Affects Boiler Performance

When implementing a training program for technicians who maintain HVAC systems and components, managers need to ensure the program gives technicians essential information for operating equipment as efficiently and safety as possible. For example, training on boiler maintenance and operations must ensure technicians can:

• explain all boiler-control functions

• understand the potential negative outcomes of a boiler that continues to fire with low water levels

• determine every possible way of feeding water to a boiler

• understand the lower water cut-off is the most important device on a boiler

• understand the result a water level that is too high can have on steam boilers

• blow down the boiler and understand where the blowdown goes

• start and shut off a boiler safely

• start a second boiler

• understand the way float-type and probe-type low water cut-offs work

• perform a slow drain test on a low-water cutoff for steam boilers

• perform a quick drain test on a low-water cutoff

• know what to do if a boiler has a low-water condition

• shut off the fuel supply to the boiler

• shut off electrical power to a boiler

• test the safety or relief valves on a boiler

• determine where the valve discharge goes

• test the pressure switches on a steam boiler

• test the temperature switches on a hot-water boiler

• determine where the combustion air comes from

• test a sight glass — gage glass — to ensure it is unobstructed and indicates the correct water level in the boiler

• understand they should never bypass boiler controls or safety devices.

— Michael Mooney, Smith Seckman Reid, www.ssr-inc.com


Spotlight: AHRI

The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) is the trade association representing manufacturers of air conditioning, heating, and commercial refrigeration equipment. AHRI is an internationally recognized advocate for the industry and develops standards for and certifies the performance of many of these products. AHRI’s 300+ member companies account for more than 90 percent of the residential and commercial air conditioning, space heating, water heating, and commercial refrigeration equipment manufactured and sold in North America. For more information, visit www.ahrinet.org.



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  posted on 4/1/2009   Article Use Policy