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Boiler Feedwater - How to keep your boiler healthy

Posted by Alex Taylor, National Account Rep on Aug 26, 2016 11:23:15 AM

When you go on a diet, what factors are important to you? If you are like most people, you probably focus on what you put in your body. When you eat bad food – it has ill effects on your body, but not all in the same way. Some foods are high in fat, some high in sodium, some have too many preservatives, but each food has different areas to consider when trying to clean up your diet. The same is true with boilerfeed water. Not all feedwater sources are the same, and depending on the source there could be different impurities to account for before using it in your boiler.

Water quality is the most critical factor that effects the useful life of your industrial steam system. There are various sources of raw water and each have a specific set of unique characteristics that should be accounted for in water treatment.  

There are many sources for raw water; they most commonly include rivers, lakes, streams, reservoirs, and ground water from wells.

Lakes and Reservoirs:  Water from lakes and reservoirs generally contain suspended matter, dissolved solids and dissolved gasses. Natural water contains varying levels of soil, sand, turbidity, oil, industrial wastes and other suspended solid particulates. Sediment filtration is usually the first step in preparing this type of feedwater for treatment.

Rivers and Streams: Raw water from rivers and streams is affected greatly by rainfall, soil erosion and industrial wastes. Though rivers and streams have greater variability in water composition it is typically softer water than that found in ground water sources.

Ground Water: Generally ground water supplies have a more consistent water composition than that of rivers and streams. The water composition of ground water typically contains higher amounts of dissolved minerals which can also be detrimental to your boiler.

What type of feedwater is best for my application?

The answer to this question is largely dependent on what type of raw water is available to you and your industrial operation. Even within the different types of raw water sources – each type varies greatly depending on factors like rainfall, geographic location, and the makeup of the soil. There are so many types of impurities that vary between regions, that it takes a feedwater specialist to ensure your boilers health. See the example below of how WARE came through for a recent customer. In addition to partnering with a boiler expert like WARE, it is imperative to rely heavily on your chemical provider to give insightful direction on water treatment.

 Check out WARE's videos on water treatment: 

-What's in your water

-Water softner resin


Case Study Preview

Client: Industrial Boiler Rental Client

Core Challenges: This rental client had access to raw water supplied by a nearby lake. This particular lake had heightened levels of silica. Unlike scaling that can be reduced using acid treatment – silica, when introduced into you boiler, acts like porcelain and is all but impossible to remove from heat transfer surfaces. The amount of silica present in the water source would have not only caused failure in the water softener – but would have had devastating effects on the boiler itself.


The WARE Solution: WARE's team of boiler experts used a high micron filter upstream of the water softener to ensure the safety of the boiler system. This allowed WARE to provide quality steam to a rental customer who depended on it.


Topics: The Grime


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