Boiler Operational Efficiency Best Practices from US DOE

Full technical report

In the report “Wise Rules for Industrial Energy Efficiency”, the EPA develops a comprehensive list of baic rules relating to boiler efficiency improvements.

• Boiler Rule 1. Effective boiler load management techniques, such as operating on high fire settings or installing smaller boilers, can save over 7% of a typical facility’s total energy use with an average simple payback of less than 2 years.

• Boiler Rule 2. Load management measures, including optimal matching of boiler size and boiler load, can save as much as 50% of a boiler’s fuel use.

• Boiler Rule 3. An upgraded boiler maintenance program including optimizing air-to-fuel ratio, burner maintenance, and tube cleaning, can save about 2% of a facility’s total energy use with an average simply payback of 5 months.

• Boiler Rule 4. A comprehensive tune-up with precision testing equipment to detect and correct excess air losses, smoking, unburned fuel losses, sooting, and high stack temperatures can result in boiler fuel savings of 2% to 20%.

• Boiler Rule 5. A 3% decrease in flue gas O2 typically produces boiler fuel savings of 2%.

• Boiler Rule 6. Every 40°F reduction in net stack temperature (outlet temperature minus inlet combustion air temperature is estimated to save 1% to 2% of a boiler’s fuel use.

• Boiler Rule 7. Removing a 1/32 inch deposit on boiler heat transfer surfaces can decrease a boiler’s fuel use by 2%; removal of a 1/8 inch deposit can decrease boiler fuel use by over 8%.

• Boiler Rule 8. For every 11°F that the entering feedwater temperature is increased, the boiler’s fuel use is reduced by 1%.

Fouling and deposition studies: studying other fields for improved understanding

  • Icing on aircrafts (water droplets)
  • Ash deposition in aero-engines (volcanic ash particles)
  • Deposition in gas turbines (soot and aerosols)
  • Respiratory tract studies (aerosols or sprays)
  • Spray coating (droplets of paint)
  • Diesel engines (diesel droplets)
  • Heat exchanger fouling in various industries such as crude oil, food, desalination, automotive or other processes.

Economic impact of high temperature corrosion in industrial boilers

Capital Costs.

• Replacement of equipment and buildings

• Excess capacity

• Redundant equipment

Control Costs.

• Maintenance and repair

• Corrosion control

Design Costs.

• Materials of construction

• Corrosion allowance

• Special processing

Associated Costs.

• Loss of product

• Technical support

• Insurance

• Parts and equipment inventory

8 Key Questions to Stay Focused on Project Goals

  1. Why are we doing the project?
  2. Do I really know what I’m doing?
  3. Do the stakeholders really care?
  4. Who is doing whatWhy? And when?
  5. Should I really get involved in all activities?
  6. Have I improved?
  7. Am I trying to deliver at any cost/risk?
  8. Is this bringing value to the stakeholders or project owner?