10/07/15 Is your heating system costing you money?
It's a question any prudent business owner should be asking themselves: when was the water in the heating system last checked?
Everyone knows that regular boiler service is essential – who wants to be stuck mid-winter without heating waiting for an engineer? – but the water in the system itself is often forgotten about.
"The quality of the water within a system can have a huge impact on the life of a boiler," reports Steve Tugwell, Water Treatment Director at TSS Facilities in Hove. "Poor water quality can cause corrosion, and also lead to a build-up of scale. Scale is a good source of insulation so more energy will be needed every time you heat up your boiler." Businesses and landlords also have a legal duty to maintain their water systems because of the legionella bacteria, which causes the potentially fatal Legionnaires' disease.
Precise chemistry needs to be applied when determining what chemicals need to be used – any company that offers to plonk a guesstimate of chemicals into your water system is probably one to be avoided. "A water system should be properly cleaned with a dispersant and then dosed with the correct levels of corrosion limiter to stop scaling and corrosion. The corrosion limiter will also prevent oxidisation, which will stop the system needing to be constantly bled to get rid of any air," explains Steve.
TSS Facilities begins its water treatment and monitoring service by carrying out an audit of the company's records of its water system. The team then inspects the incoming main and moves through the system to the tank as well as doing a check of all the outlets in the building. Temperatures are checked along with other legal requirements.
The team also note down any additional items that could be beneficial, such as water softeners to prevent scale in hard water areas. Despite this not being a legally required part of monitoring a water system, this approach is best practice and an indication of a bespoke service rather than a one-size-fits-all package.
There's no question – Improving the quality of the water within your heating systems:
- Improves the efficiency of a boiler system
- Reduces running costs
- Lengthens the life of the system's parts.