Buying an Industrial Boiler: Critical Features to Consider
Buying a commercial boiler for your industry needs is not something to take lightly. It’s an expensive piece of equipment that needs to function properly for many years to come.
The last thing you want to do is buy the wrong boiler and end up having to spend extra money on repairs. You also don’t want to have to buy another boiler long before you planned on doing so, wasting even more money. To prevent these from happening, here are the most important factors to consider when selecting a new industrial steam boiler.
Getting More Efficiency for the Price
Obviously, the price of a boiler system has to receive some consideration. Everyone has a budget, and you need to buy a boiler that fits into that budget. However, you may not want to skimp on price when it comes to buying a boiler. If you settle for a cheap, inferior product, you may end up spending more in the long run on repairs or replacing the boiler sooner than expected.
Efficiency is actually a more important factor to consider when it comes to selecting a new boiler. When you buy a steam boiler, you need to look at the overall cost of operation, not just the price of the unit. An inefficient boiler will consume more fuel, causing energy bills to rise. In this sense, it may be better to spend a little more on a boiler with higher thermal efficiency, knowing it will save you money in the long run. Miura boilers have been shown to reduce fuel costs by up to 20%. Over the lifecycle of a boiler, which could be 15 to 20 years, saving that much on energy costs could end up being a significant amount of savings.
Firetube Vs. Watertube Boilers
Another key factor to consider is the type of boiler itself–specifically the heat transfer design of the boiler system. Most conventional boiler systems are fire tube boilers, in which hot gases pass through tubes immersed in the water to heat it. Watertube boilers take the opposite approach: the water passes through a tube that is surrounded by hot flue gas. The difference between these designs is that water tube boilers can convert water to steam in a very short period of time, requiring much less startup time and consuming less fuel in the process.
Watertube boilers also take up less space while providing enough steam output to accommodate most industrial processes. Miura specializes in producing high-quality watertube boilers, which many industries find preferable to conventional fire tube boilers.
When Size Matters: Space Considerations
The size of the boiler matters in the sense that you have to be able to fit it in your boiler room. Generally, you’ll want a boiler to have as small of a footprint as possible, as it will help to save both space and money. Miura’s modular boiler design helps to keep boilers as small as possible without sacrificing output or efficiency. The smaller boiler helps create flexibility with regard to space, as there is no need for tube pull-space or door-swing space like with traditional boilers.
This creates additional space in the boiler room and may even open the door for multiple modular boilers working on the same system to help improve efficiency and cut operating costs even further.
Safety Is a Must
Safety should always be one of the top priorities when buying a new boiler. Conventional steam and hot water boilers sometimes become overheated to the point that the build-up of high-pressure steam can cause a catastrophic explosion. One way to mitigate this risk is with a boiler system specifically designed for low water content operation. With low water content boilers, the amount of steam build-up is not enough to do excessive damage even if the unit malfunctions.
Another risk with conventional boilers is in the physical design itself. Performing maintenance on these units requires opening extremely heavy steel doors, realigning them, and closing them again, all while standing on a ladder — an invitation to a variety of injuries ranging from back pain to severe limb injury.
When it comes to safety, Miura boilers have an impeccable track record. Miura’s steam boilers are designed with no heavy doors, and their low water content design makes a catastrophic explosion virtually impossible. With over 140,000 units in operation all over the world, Miura has never experienced a pressure vessel explosion in one of its boilers.
Stay Ahead of Emissions Regulations
With growing concerns about air pollution, greenhouse gases, and the environment, manufacturers are under increasing pressure to reduce the amount of harmful emissions caused by their industrial processes. Much of the emissions problems companies face stem from the use of conventional boiler systems. Even when using “clean” natural gas, these boilers are notorious for expelling large amounts of CO2 and toxic nitrogen oxides (NOx) into the atmosphere, damaging the environment and often causing respiratory issues.
There are, however, alternative boiler designs that can significantly reduce the rate of harmful emissions. Miura boiler systems require far less fuel to operate and can easily power down when not needed. They also are designed for low to no NOx emissions, making it much easier for companies to comply with state and local emissions standards.
Maintenance Made Simple and Seamless
Last, but certainly not least, you need to consider how much long-term maintenance and upkeep your boiler will need in order to function at its best for as long as possible. A low-quality boiler may require frequent repairs, which will not only cost extra but may also force you to replace the boiler sooner than expected. A well-maintained steam system involves more than just the condition of the pressure vessel itself. It also involves having a good water treatment process in place to prevent mineral build-up and ensure proper working of your feedwater tanks, deaerator tanks, and reverse osmosis systems. Having an effective monitoring and control system can also help you identify and fix small problems before they turn into big ones, and you’ll also want a robust troubleshooting/maintenance support plan in place for routine maintenance issues.
Miura offers a full array of accessories and support systems designed to cover all aspects of your boiler system maintenance — from state of the art remote monitoring to water treatment to troubleshooting support. Miura also offers a boiler maintenance program that only requires a three-hour shutdown for routine inspections. Such inspections, as well as our monitoring system, will help keep your boiler running efficiently and safely for a long time to come.