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Q.1: How to improve poor boiler steam-fuel ratio and increase boiler efficiency?

For occasional low efficiency --- clean the burner tips and fuel oil pumps filters, check for viscosity of fuel oil, burner tip
holes and atomizing steam pressure.
For continuously low efficiency -- check flame colour, if the colour of the flame is not bright golden yellow, combustion is
poor. Take remedial measures mentioned as above and additionally check the following.
If stack temperature is high, there is soot deposition in the boiler. Stop the boiler and carry out cleaning of the boiler.
Check water side deposition/ scale formation. If scale formation is observed, plan for cleaning the boiler with appropriate
method.Evaluate for installation of economiser and soot blowing frequency.
Q.2: Soot deposition in my boiler is heavy. How to reduce soot formation and
The reasons for heavy soot deposition are:
i) Poor quality of fuel with higher ash content metals, high insolubility, ensure the quality of fuel.
ii) Poor combustion; improve the combustion by checking Atomizing Steam pressure by cleaning burner tip and fuel oil
filters and checking viscosity near burner tip.
iii) Avoid mixing of different types of fuels .
Q.3: Blow down losses are heavy, how to reduce blow down rate?
i) Monitor boiler water treatment. All volatile treatment is better than conventional treatment if there is techno-economical
ii) Check water treatment process for seepage of Chloride, Silica, etc. Check TSP quality for Chloride content.
iii) Fine control of KBD with increased frequency of Blow Down water will help in saving of energy & boiler water.

Q.4: There is corrosion problem in the pressure parts on F.W. circuit, how to overcome the problem?
i) Check proper deaeration in the Deaerator. D.O. should be less than 7PPB
ii) Maintain N2H2 at desired level in the BFW.
iii) Maintain pH more than 9 in the CBD water.
iv) Closely monitor TSP level in the CBD water.
v) Check feasibility of change over of BFW treatment to AVT.
vi) Verify for proper selection of oxygen scavenger if used.
Q.5: In my boiler, Burner tip choking is frequent, How to solve it?
To avoid frequent Burner tip choking, check for - poor fuel quality, improper fuel temperature/ viscosity at Burner tip, high
content in the fuel and passing of sludge particles through filter. Check for filter mesh size.
Q.6: Chimney emits blackish smoke frequently, how to ensure proper stack emission?
Blackish smoke for chimney indicates poor combustion or inadequate combustion air, take necessary action to improve
combustion and adjust fuel-air ratio. If ID and FD dampers are not free, the operation will be sluggish and result in poor
combustion during load variation. Rouse the damper.

Q.7: How to avoid frequent Drum water level sight glass failure?
After repairing of level glass assembly, carry out hot tightening of bolts applying proper torque. Use good
quality of gasket,
suitable for the temperature and pressure.
Why Coiled Economizers Should Be Avoided
One method for economizer heat recovery on firetube boilers has been with cylindrical, or coiled type economizers.
There are many serious concerns regarding the proper selection and operation of coiled type economizers. Any
economizer selected should be of a rectangular configuration.
The first concern is in reference to the actuated flue gas bypass arrangment required on a coiled type unit. The problem
is that the damper arrangment does not provide a physical seperation between the gas bypass channel and the internal
tube bundle. If the flue gas is not physically separated from the coil, some gas will inevitably pass over the tubes. This
could actually lead to accelerated corrosion as the bulk of the hot flue gas will bypass the coil leaving relatively low
temperature tubes unprotected. In a low fire or cycling operation, flue gas could begin to condense on the tube wall
which would lead to a premature failure of the economizer. These units are also not repairable in place. these coiled units
tend to be inexpensive up front, however since they cannot be repaired in place without significant time and expense,
they are considered to be disposable units.
The aforementioned bypass arrangment is proposed to be a benefit. In reality the only reason that the damper is there is
to act as a flue gas plug to force gas over and around the tube bundle. If not for this damper the gas would bypass the
tube bundle and no energy recovery would be recognized. It has been inferred that bypassing flue gas has an advantage
of corrosion control. One point must be established, an economizer is installed to recovery energy. Bypassing energy
defeats the purpose.
The correct answer for an economizer installation is to select a unit with a rectangular tube configuration. These tubes
must also be individually and fully removable in place to facilitate easy maintanance. No welding or torching, nor should
any A.S.M.E. inspection or hydrotest be required for the replacement of tube elements. The materials of construction
should also be capable of withstanding possible corrosive environments. As a minimum, all of the internal tube supports
and casing in contact with the flue gas should be manufactured out of stainless steel. The heat exchanger bundle should
also have the option of being manufactured out of stainless or other alloy tubes suitable for the application.
Economizer condensation and also tube failures are a reality of any economizer installation. An economizer should also
be designed with internal provisions for collecting and draining away this water before it has a chance to enter the boiler
and cause serious damage. The entire stack opening must be covered as a minimum to protect against water damage
inside of the boiler.





A Boiler Log is a check-list for the Boiler Operators. It helps to track the operating parameters over a period. For any
Boiler Preventive Maintenance the Boiler log is a key factor. Separate log sheets are required for each Boiler in the plant.
One option is having a log sheet that is valid for one month (31 days), and has provision for two sets of readings per day
for low and medium pressure boiler and three sets of reading per for high pressure boilers. It is recommended that
completed logs should be properly preserves for future analysis.
It helps to avoid an emergency shut-down. Over a period of time, by following operating trends from the boiler log, one
can properly diagnose the problems and fix up a suitable system maintenance schedule. For example, a steady rise in
stack temperature, at the same boiler load, indicates dirty boiler firesides or water side scale build-up,. In either case
preventive measure can be taken before it is necessary to shut the unit down for cleaning.
The majority of the Boiler accidents occur mainly due to two reasons; control failure and human operational /
maintenance mistakes. The National Board Incident Report for 1993 indicates that 79% of all reported boiler accidents
for the three boiler categories occur due to either low water cut-offs, or operator error/poor maintenance. Low-watercutoff problems account for 62% of the incidents. Therefore proper maintenance and testing of the control device could
cause a dramatic reduction in the boiler accidents. Moreover proper keeping and analysis of boiler logs help operators to
avoid operational/maintenance error and therefore reduce boiler accidents. Data in the log should be compared with data
recorded when the boiler was new or recently overhauled. If such a comparison reveals significance deviation, technician
may need to inspect and repair components.

The most important concern is to keep the log completely, accurately and updated regularly. It is not uncommon to find
that logs are kept with identical headings for an entire month or with gaps in the readings. The management must stress
the need for complete, accurate logs. And must also explains the need for analysis and its benefits. The management is
responsible for implementing log program and supervising its continuous completion and ensuring that an analysis
program is carried out from time to time.
Log sheets are available from boiler insurance companies. Maintenance log should include those items recommended in
the boiler and burner manufacture's operating instructions. It is always advisable to prepare customised log form. These
log can be easily customised for the particular installation and its unique requirements. Suggested items that might be
included in maintenance log are shown below. But items may be added or deleted as needed for the specific installation.
It is advisable to maintain two Log Sheets to filled up by the control room and field operators separately.
Daily Instrument Reading:


Blow down and low water cutoff test of steam boilers
Blow down gage glasses (steam)
Blow down make up feeder ( low pressure steam )
Blow down boiler ( steam )
Boiler control linkage check
Boiler and system leakage check
Burner flame check
Compressor (s) lubricating oil level ( control and atomizing check )
Flame signal strength for both pilot and main flame, record readings check
Flame failure cut off and timing check
Pilot and main flame fuel shutoff valve closing check
Igniter and burner operation check
Level in chemical treatment tank check
Boiler water treatment test results check
Compressor(s) air filter check
Low fire start interlock check
High pressure/temperature interlocks check
Low water cutoffs ( hot water ) teat check
Motor and equipment bearings lubrication
Test fan and air pressure interlocks check
Main burner fuel safety shutoff valves for leakage check
Oil-test pressure and temperature interlocks check
High and low gas pressure interlocks for gas-test check
Safety relief valves and operation check
Tube Failures Indication , the Diagnosis and the Remedial Measures:
1. Unable to maintain boiler water concentration (D)-Tube minor leak-minor leakage from pitting, cracking or tube seat leakage
(R)-Remove the boiler from service at first convenient time, hydraulically test to
locate the leak, Repair by welding or splicing.
2- Sound of steam blowing in the furnace/setting/steam vapor flow visible from stack
(D)-Tube substantial leak -leak from tube overheating /scale/tube seat
(R)-Same as above plus tube seat re-rolling.
3- Steam explosion in furnace or setting followed by inability to maintain boiler
water level
(D)- Failure of tube from low water level, tube blockage, or erosion of exterior

(R)- Remove the boiler from the line immediately. Repair by splicing or by whole
tube replacement as required.
4-Bowed water wall or generating tube towards the furnace or away from furnace
(D)-overheating due to internal deposit or low water level. Usually internal
deposit result in tubes bowing away from furnace
(D)- and low water results in tubes bowing towards the furnace
(R)- Internal cleaning and tube replacement as required.
(R)- If low water level is indicated, thorough inspection of drum damage and tube
seat leakage must be made.
(R)- Take steps to avoid recurrence of low water condition.
5- Localized over heating and Tube blisters
(D)- Internal deposit
(R)-Repair by retubing, welding in tube section. Clean internally by turbining or
acid cleaning.
6-Tube swelling extended both longitudinally and circumferentially as compared to
the blisters(D)-Internal blockage either excessive or complete
(R)-Retube or splice
(R)-Probe tubes for block.
(D)-If block is from water conditions,
(R)-Cleaning is required.
7- Corrosion and Internal pitting, sharp edges and covered with barnacles in drum or
(D)-Oxygen in boiler water
(R)-Depth and extent of pitting will determine the extent and need of tube
(R)-Source of oxygen must be located and eliminated.
8-Internal pitting appearing as porosity of metal, especially of tube ends
(D)-Corrosion-acid attack,
(D)-Break down of inhibitor during acid cleaning
(R)If noted and corrected after first occurrence generally no replacement is
9-Internal loss of metal not sharply defined and accompanied by black iron oxide
(D)-Corrosion Overheating resulting into breakdown of water in to H and O2
due to sludge lay down or pluggage
(R)- Replacement if required.
(R)-Internal cleaning and correction of water conditions is required.
10-External Pitting
(D)-corrosion-from corrosive ash deposit and moisture either from due point or
external source such as leaking soot blower or tube
(R)-In emergency tubes out of high heat zone can be plugged.
(R)- Locate and correct source of moisture.
(D)-If due-point from in service corrosion,
(R)-take steps to raise metal temperature.
11-Tube cracking
(D)-Mechanical stress or a combination of stress corrosion and tube vibration
(D)-Interference with expansion or differential expansion with adjacent part,
resultant stress plus corrosion
(D)-or turbulent gas flow over the tube
(R)-Crack can be ground out and welded or repair by splicing.
(R)-Locate and eliminate source of expansion difficulty by inspection. Using
tube spacers can stop vibration.
12-External metal loss- highly polished area
(D)-Erosion- scrubbing by ash or soot blower steam or combination of both
(R)-Pad weld or splice in tube section.
(R)-Readjust soot blowers,

(R)-Eliminate channeling of ash,

(R)-Or use shields.
13-External metal loss-Oxidized, fire scale area
(D)-prolonged and repeated overheating
(R)-inspection or the Rocouple installation will determine the cause of over
(R)-Eliminate the cause of overheating.

14 sudden drop of steam pressure due to Overheated superheated tubes failure

(D)-due to solids carry over in steam
(D)-high boiler water concentration,
(D)-excessive water level fluctuation,
(D)-or drum baffle leakage
(R)-Check the drum baffle leaks when out of service.
(R)-Check for condenser leak or boiler water concentration.
(D)-or blockage of the tube
(D)-Superheater tube filled with condensate overheated during start up due to
too rapid start up with failure to boil out superheater or maintain safe metal
(R)-Review, and correct start up procedure.
15-High Steam temperature
(D)-high gas temperature entering superheater,
(D)-high excess air entering superheater due to improper control adjustment,
or air infiltration into the boiler setting
(D)-Check excess air at furnace exit and boiler exit and correct air leaks if
(R)-Readjust combustion controls if indicated.
(R)-Use furnace wall blowers if deposits are unusually heavy on the furnace