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Commercial steam boiler - drain for summer?

elfie Member Posts: 264
have a 15 section steam boiler and am wondering if it should be drained and left dry for summer and then refilled with fresh water?

have heard its not good because the existing water is pretty much deoxginated and therefore why get rid of it and introduce so much new  oxygenated water

also, have some condensate lines that dont fully drain - worth draining for summer?



  • Rod
    Rod Posts: 2,067
    edited May 2012
    Summer Storage

    Hi- Having a commercial boiler, you might want to look at Rhomar Water's suggestions.

     http://www.rhomarwater.com/products/residential-steam-system/  Take a look at their Boiler Pro 903 data sheet.  If you have any questions, give them a call, they are nice people to work with.

    - Rod
  • elfie
    elfie Member Posts: 264
    drain steam boiler for summer?

    anyone know if this is a good idea? to avoid rusting
  • MichaelK
    MichaelK Member Posts: 34
    what about maintenance

    If you drain it down now, all of the "mud" sitting in the mud legs and the low water cut-outs will have a chance to dry up and be extra exciting when you go to clean it out.  Personally I would leave it filled.  Haven't ever noticed this leading to rusting unless you have a leak on some of your piping.  Then the leak should be repaired, draining the boiler isn't fixing the issue there.

    Good luck
    Michael Knight
  • gerry gill
    gerry gill Member Posts: 3,033
    No. its not a good idea.

    Either press it up. (fill it into the header after adding chemicals to control corossion) or just turn off the switch and salute it.
    Serving Cleveland's eastern suburbs from Cleveland Heights down to Cuyahoga Falls.

  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,854
    filling up

    I would like to do this to mine but I don't understand part of it.  Whenever you add makeup water you have to bring it to a boil for a bit to boil all of the dissolved gases out. 

    How can I do this if I have it filled up into the header?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • ttekushan_3
    ttekushan_3 Member Posts: 942
    No need to boil

    Once you fill it to the headers, merely bring the temp up to 180 to 200 degrees. That's adequate to drive off the oxygen.

    Then shut if off.   Leave some clear indication on the power switch, breaker, or where ever, that the boiler MUST BE DRAINED to the normal water level BEFORE being fired again in the fall.  You don't want to hear what that sounds like!
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,756
    edited May 2012
    I would lean strongly towards 200°.

    At 180°, the oxygen content is about 3 mg/l. That's about 1/3 of what it is at room temperature, so depending on how much cold water was added, you might not even be getting rid of any of the oxygen you just added. Even at 200 you're only bringing it down to about 1.5 mg/l, so if you're not going for 200-210° F you might as well not bother firing the boiler.

    On the other hand, 3 mg/l might be reasonably safe. I mean, if the water isn't saturated with oxygen I'm not sure the oxygen would attack the iron, so there isn't any need to fire the boiler anyway, which is probably why Gerry didn't mention it.
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
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