Last summer’s heat wave is just a fading memory, and it's that time again: time to get your building’s boiler operating and ready for the colder months. Before the first snow falls however, some maintenance and housekeeping to your building's boiler and boiler room may be in order.
To most non-professionals, what’s in the boiler room is a mystery. The area can also be dangerous—it can lead to accidents if it's not kept secure from children and other unauthorized persons. Mysterious or not, the boiler is one of the most important pieces of equipment in any apartment building, since everyone needs heat and hot water, especially in the winter.
That’s why it’s important to make sure your boiler is in top operating condition before heating season settles in—you don’t want undetected minor problems to develop into sudden catastrophes. Also, in today’s economy, whether you’re using natural gas or home heating oil, you want to make sure your boiler is operating in as energy-efficient a manner as possible.
Boilers can develop many problems over the years. One of the most common are tube leaks, resulting from a lack of regular cleaning and a lack of regular treatment. Milt Schatzer, service manager of Aggressive Energy & Mechanical Group in Brooklyn, says a lack of chemical treatment causes this problem. “Any cold water or fresh water coming into the boiler causes tube rot,” he says. “It’s costly—you will have to replace the tubes.”
Carbon buildup, another problem, is often found in boilers that burn oil. Correcting this can lead to lower harmful exhaust emissions and lower maintenance costs.