Classic BULLETIN Article

Recommendations for a Safe Boiler Room 

This article was originally published in the fall 2000 National Board BULLETIN. Some code requirements may have changed because of advances in material technology and/or actual experience. The reader is cautioned to refer to the latest edition and addenda of the National Board Inspection Code for current requirements.
1. Keep the boiler room clean and clear of all unnecessary items. The boiler room should not be considered an all-purpose storage area. The burner requires proper air circulation in order to prevent incomplete fuel combustion and the production of carbon monoxide. The boiler room is for the boiler!
2. Ensure that all personnel who operate or maintain the boiler room are properly trained on all equipment, controls, safety devices, and up-to-date operating procedures.
3. Before startup, ensure that the boiler room is free of all potentially dangerous situations, such as flammable materials or mechanical or physical damage to the boiler or related equipment. Clear intakes and exhaust vents; check for deterioration and possible leaks.
4. Ensure a thorough inspection by a properly qualified inspector, such as one who holds a National Board commission.
5. After any extensive repair or new installation of equipment, make sure a qualified boiler inspector reinspects the entire system.
6. Monitor all new equipment closely until safety and efficiency are demonstrated.
7. Use boiler operating log sheets, maintenance records, and manufacturers’ recommendations to establish a preventive maintenance schedule based on operating conditions, as well as on past maintenance, repairs, and replacement that were performed on the equipment.
8. Establish a checklist for proper startup and shutdown of boilers and all related equipment according to manufacturers’ recommendations.
9. Observe equipment extensively before allowing an automated operation system to be used with minimal supervision.
10. Establish a periodic preventive maintenance and safety testing program that follows CSD-1-1998 Part CM and the manufacturers’recommendations.