Boiler Water Treatment Solutions
At Chemstar WATER, we design our boiler water treatment programs to protect the integrity of boilers and all related heat exchange equipment such as economizers, air preheaters, deaerators, superheaters, and steam turbines.
Many leading industrial and government customers have been trusting Chemstar WATER with their large steam boilers for decades. As you will see in one of our case studies, Chemstar WATER delivers outstanding performance when it comes down to scale, deposit, and corrosion control in the boiler systems.
Importance of Pretreatment of “Boiler Feedwater”
Just like when you wash your clothes, pretreatment can be vital to the overall effectiveness of the process and the outcome! In boiler feedwater, pretreatment consists of several steps to remove raw water impurities (e.g., iron, alkalinity, particulate matter, and hardness). It is dependent on the right treatment program to mitigate the waterside problems. We advise careful maintenance of the pretreatment equipment to ensure continuous positive outcomes as neglected systems are prone to scale and corrosion issues.
Waterside Problems in Boiler
These waterside problems are generally the result of:
- Corrosion, tube corrosion caused by oxygen pitting
- Unified unit corrosion due to uncontrolled low pH
- Deposits and boiler scale, which reduces the heat transfer
- Thermal shock, major fouling, cracking caused by cold water improperly introduced to the boiler
- Boiler water treatment carryover causing deposits, potentially clogging valves, heat exchangers, turbines, and super heaters
- Untreated or poorly treated condensate return systems may return a significates amount of iron to the feedwater, causing corrosion and scale
These problems will result in:
- Increased maintenance and overall operating expenditures: Even minor reductions in efficiency due to improper care can lead to large operating costs.
More Downtime: Improper care means your plant is offline more due to problems and subject to timely repairs resulting in production losses.
- Unplanned Equipment Expenses: Poor maintenance also contributes to premature or total equipment failure. With proper water treatment planning in place, the equipment would not require sudden or unexpected repairs or replacements, allowing you to maximize your investment and reach the full expected lifetime of the machinery.
- Unsafe Environment: Safety is always our priority at Chemstar WATER and our goal is to help your team with the right water management and safety plans so you never experience hazardous operating conditions due to waterside problems.
Boiler Water Treatment Program
Just like with our Cooling Towers, our Boiler Water Treatment Programs are developed and run by our Certified Water Technologist (CWT) and Association of Water Technologies (AWT) technicians. They are well-versed in the standard fire tube and water designs systems and regularly work on high heat flux steam generators and electric boilers. When we first meet, you’ll receive a comprehensive assessment that will give you the technical review, analysis, and options to establish a rigorous water treatment management plan optimized for your system and goals. At Chemstar WATER we are OEM-agnostic and offer the best solutions from chemicals to equipment installation and maintenance complemented by our world-class service. You will have a dedicated technician, access to 24-7 reporting, and—best of all—peace of mind that your boiler system is in knowledgeable hands.
Why you need a steam-water treatment program:
As part of a standard steam boiler’s process, boiler deposits are created, leaving behind metal oxides, scale, and sludge. These deposits hamper circulation and ideal heat exchange leading to corrosion. Customers who don’t maintain their systems experience failures worsened by air ingress and dissolved oxygen concentration surges during downtime because of the corrosion build-up. See our Oxygen Scavengers section to learn more. Our services and water treatment program ensure that your system minimizes such deposit build-up so that you have more uptime and reduced downtime and costs.
Maximize Boiler Water Treatment Efficiency
Boiler systems are energy-intensive and costly. Therefore, it is in our customers’ best interest to maximize boiler efficiency through increased steam production and reduced fuel consumption in a two-step process:
- The first step is to ensure steam and condensate losses are controlled well, including treating condensate return.
- The second step is minimizing blowdown, which can be achieved by using makeup water pretreatment systems including water filtration and softening systems, demineralizers, dealkalizers, reverse osmosis systems, electrodialysis reversal as well as water treatment chemicals such as polymer organics.
Through these methods, most of our customers’ energy savings are more than their annual water treatment costs.
Effect of a Good Boiler Water Treatment Program
One measure of the value of good blowdown and deposit control is related to these factors’ impact on fuel cost. Even a thin deposit on the boiler tubes dramatically increases the fuel needed to generate the required amount of steam.
Consider these examples:
- A 1/32” deposit in a 1,000-HP boiler system operating at 50% load can increase fuel costs by over $150,000 per year.
- Excess blowdown can also greatly impact fuel requirements and costs. Maintaining a 10% blowdown rate (10 feedwater cycles) instead of 5% (20 feedwater cycles) in the same 1,000-HP boiler system can increase fuel costs by over $75,000 per year.