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Lowering Steam PSI to save $$

Bogie Member Posts: 2
I am in charge of lowering natural gas costs by 20% in our facility.  1) Will lowering the boiler steam pressure save money?  Our boilers produce 50 psi steam, but most of our processes our pressure reduced to 15 - 20 psi.

2) Is there a way to calculate the savings?



  • LarryC
    LarryC Member Posts: 331
    Perform a comprehensive ystem review.


    I am not qualified to answer that question, however I am sure someone else will.  May I suggest that you perform a comprehensive system review to determine what you actually need versus what you actually use. 

    1)  What is currently installed?  

    2)  How is the steam used?  Process or Building heating?

    3)  What is the state of the piping insulation?  Building insulation? 

    4)  Is the condensate returned to the boiler(s)?

    5)  Is the steam demand seasonal?

    6)  Can you use a High - Low - High burner set up?

    Dan (the owner of this site) sells multiple books explaining steam systems and what they need to work properly.  Right now he has a new book called "Greening Steam" that may be applicable to your situation.

    There are several steam proffessionals on this site that well qualified to help you reach your goals.  What area of the country are you located?

    Good Luck.
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,200
    You need to confirm the lower pressure

    will get the steam you need through the pipes you have at the speed you need. When it is said dropping pressure saves money that is for heating systems designed for low pressure. Lower pressure will save money but will it work with your current piping? You may be able to go to a modulating burner if you do not have one all ready.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
  • LarryC
    LarryC Member Posts: 331
    Any updates?

    Any updates yet?
  • Bogie
    Bogie Member Posts: 2
    30 PSI

    We were able to lower our plant steam pressure to 30 psi with no ill effects.  We are located in NW Ohio.  Once the cooled season is upon us, we may have issues with the lower psi.  We have 8 large wall heating units that are all currently off.

    I have limited data, but it looks like we have saved 100 Dth a day on 1 of our products.  We were using around 400 Dth a day.  Again I only have 3 points of data.

    About our system:

    We are an Electrogalvanizing facility.  485K sq ft.

    2 - 25 MMBTU/HR boilers  - Runs off Landfill Gas or Natural Gas

    1 - 7 MMBTU/HR boiler - Runs off Natural Gas / Currently set up as our # 3 boiler

    Condensate return does come back to the boilers.  We have 2 lift stations.

This discussion has been closed.