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What You Should Know about Boilers and Scaling

gauge-boiler-water-heaterThe boiler is an incredibly reliable heating system. Many people keep their boilers for decades (although this can be unsafe, and we recommend replacing them before their 15-20 year lifespan is up). Yet, boilers can still run into their share of trouble. One of the most common issues our customers come across in a gas hydronic boiler has to do with something called scaling.

If you hear noises from your boiler, notice a drop in performance, or want to have routine maintenance to ensure your system is in good shape, give us a call! Otherwise, read on to find out what scaling, or mineral buildup, can do to affect your system.

What Is Scaling?

Scaling is the term for when mineral deposits build up within the plumbing components of your home. Most homes have some level of minerals coming into the plumbing system, and this is known as “hard water.”

Hard water can build up on the inside of your plumbing pipes, as well as the pipes that circulate hot water via your hydronic boiler. It can also settle at the bottom of the boiler tank, and it could wear down the lining or create a dangerous pressure imbalance (in severe cases).

Can It Be Removed?

The short answer is yes, scaling can typically be removed from a boiler, either by flushing it or, more likely, cleaning it out with chemicals. However, the difficulty increases the longer the deposits have been allowed to remain in the pipes. Before you ever have to clean out the boiler of scaling, it makes sense to treat the water that circulates throughout it, the feedwater.

Can You Treat Your Water?

We highly recommend treating the feedwater that goes into the boiler, if not treating the water throughout the entire home. A heating technician can help you manage your boiler feedwater. Feedwater treatment can also help to prevent alkalinity and corrosion within the tank.

A plumber can also handle a water softener installation that keeps scale from causing trouble within any pipe or plumbing system in a home. Luckily, we offer both of these services.

What Should You Know in the Future?

Whether or not you are dealing with this problem at this time, we strongly recommend calling a professional technician for maintenance each year. No matter how durable a boiler may seem, problems like these can come up at any moment and it’s best to come across them early.

If a technician notices scaling is affecting a boiler sooner rather than later, they can treat the problem and have the boiler back in action when you need it. This can prevent scale from wearing down the boiler and help you keep your system for longer. Contact technicians each year, ideally as early in the winter or fall as possible, for your annual boiler maintenance.

Take care of your system. Contact Max Sr & Paul Schoenwalder Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning, A Corp. for your heating service needs. We install and service all makes and models of boilers in Union, NJ.

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