How Gas Trains Contribute to Safe Boiler Function

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  • 11/10/2014 |
  • 10:00 am
How Gas Trains Contribute to Safe Boiler Function
{Courtesy of Ware, Inc. Newsletter "The Grime"} -

Boilers are great tools. They are able to generate steam in a manner that helps industrial and commercial

industries flourish and keeps households comfortable. However, when not maintained or operated

properly, boilers can be dangerous. One aspect of keeping a boiler safe is an effective gas train.

A gas train is the apparatus of a boiler that feeds fuel into the burner. Gas trains usually consist of

multiple components. The first of these components is the sediment trap; it serves as a filter for the gas

entering the gas train and traps any sediment or impurities so that they are unable to enter the boiler.

The gas train also consists of a series of valves and switches. The Manual Shut-Off Valve (MSOV) shuts

down the fuel supply to the boiler so that maintenance may be done by boiler operators. The Gas Pressure

Regulator ensures that the pressure of the gas is maintained at the manufacturerÕs recommended level. The

Low Pressure Gas Switch lets the boiler operator know when the pressure of the gas in the boiler is below

what it needs to be in order to operate. The Safety Shut-Off Valves (SSOV) work with the Vent Valve to

ensure that gas cannot enter the boiler during emergency situations. The High Gas Pressure Switch

automatically shuts down the burner when it senses that the gas pressure is too high. The gas train also

contains Firing Rate Valves, which ensure that a steady amount of fuel is sent to the burner, and Test

Valves, which enable the operator to test for leaks in the Safety Shut-Off Valves.

These valves and switches work together to ensure safety in boiler operation. They either enable the boiler

operator to shut down operation or simply shut down operation on their own. Making sure that these

components function properly is highly important to safety in any boiler room. This is because these

components are often the keys to preventing a catastrophic boiler explosion.

For example: if the gas valves within a boiler do not shut off, they can leak gas into the boiler while it is

not running. Then, when the boiler is started, the high amount of unnecessary gas causes an explosion.

The gas train system also helps control the flow and pressure of fuel within the boiler. In doing this, it

keeps the fuel pressure consistent, rather than unstable; an unstable fuel pressure can also lead to a boiler

explosion. Boiler operators can test to see if their gas train is functioning properly by administering a Leak Test or a

Bubble Test. These two names describe the process of connecting a hose to a test valve, placing the end

of the hose in a container of water, enabling pressure to come through the valve and counting the number

of bubbles in the container of water. Generally, less than 5 bubbles per minute is considered safe; any

more than that means that the valve is not functioning properly and needs to be repaired.

WARE is able to administer these tests for customers and provides this service on a set schedule for

customers with whom we have a Preventative Maintenance contract. We are also able to test the High and

Low Pressure Switches in order to ensure that they are operating properly. Conducting monthly

maintenance on your gas train system will ensure that your boiler is functioning not only efficiently, but safely as well
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