The Heat Hero: Burner Diffusers

The Heat Hero: Burner Diffusers

Burner diffusers are one of the unsung heroes of the boiler’s fire side. You don’t see them that often, but the difference they make in efficient steam production and boiler longevity is significant. But what exactly do they do? The name pretty much gives it away: they diffuse the flame. Here’s why that’s important, though.

Temperature and Change

A boiler’s tank is made of metal, and metal is obviously really strong. However, it’s subject to the same laws of physics as everything else in a boiler, and that means it’s susceptible to heat stress. That’s not the bad attitude you get when the air conditioning breaks. Rather, heat stress has to do with the molecular structure of the metal itself. If you heat the surface of a piece of metal evenly and all at once, the entire surface will get to the same temperature. Since the metal heats evenly, all the molecules and crystalline structures that make up the metal expand the same amount at the same rate. 

However, if you don’t heat that metal surface up evenly, it’s a whole different story. If some of the metal expands more than other parts, the metal itself will start to get pulled and twisted on the molecular level. Do that over and over again, and microscopic cracks will start to appear. Eventually microscopic cracks become big cracks, and big cracks become disasters. 

Steady and Even

As you can see, it’s important to heat a boiler as steady and evenly as possible. That’s where the heroic burner diffuser comes in, sitting right there above the burner. As the flame leaves the burner, it passes through a series of slots or holes in the diffuser that work together to direct the “flow” of the flame, spreading it out so that the heat is evenly distributed over the tank surface. By doing so, it prevents hot spots that cause the above-mentioned stress. But the diffuser performs another important task, as well. 


The burner diffuser’s other heroic role in the boiler has to do with efficiency and emissions. The more evenly spread the flame is, the more thoroughly and efficiently the flame burns. That helps optimize fuel use. But an efficient, optimized flame also produces fewer emissions, which helps comply with environmental regulations. So in the long run, your burner diffusers help you spend less and be kinder to the planet.

As you can see, the diffuser does a lot to help your boiler run better, and save you money. That’s what WARE does, too, from adjusting and tuning your boiler diffusers to pretty much anything you need in the way of parts and service. We also stock a wide range of new and rental boilers, as well. If there’s anything you need, just let us know

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