Commercial boilers are useful for space heating and room lighting. They are a type of a machine that you should handle carefully during repair or maintenance since they operate at very high temperatures and pressure. Boilers are electrical or oil-powered machines that heat water to generate steam or hot water needed for industrial purposes. The primary safety hazard in boiler systems is the risk of explosion when a boiler fails to contain the expansion power generated by heating water. Any mechanical or personnel errors can lead to an explosion, which is financially costly at best and fatal at worst.
To avoid these hazards, most companies have a separate boiler room with limited access. Only authorised people are allowed to enter the room whenever it is necessary. Below are some ways in which a company can ensure that their commercial boiler room is safe for everyone who regularly visits.
Clear the Room
The boiler room should only act as a room for the boiler, not a storage space for other items. Having items scattered everywhere in the room makes maintenance more challenging, plus they can injure people who visit the room if there is low lighting. Using a boiler room as a storage room also increases the chances of accidentally storing flammable products in there.
Conduct Regular Inspection
Check the hygiene of the boiler room. Search for any leakages in the piping system. Ensure all parts of the boiler are functioning. Boiler rooms should be clean and well organized. Any trash or poorly kept equipment in the boiler room might injure staff, and ease the spread of fire in case of an outburst. Like any other machine, boilers are prone to wear and tear. They need regular servicing, preferably after one year, though after a couple of years, say ten to fifteen, you should plan for a commercial boiler replacement.
Ensure Sufficient Ventilation
Companies should keep their boiler rooms well ventilated, especially if their boilers are oil-powered. The International Fuel Gas Code stipulates that there should be at least two openings in a boiler room, and they should preferably be at opposite ends. Having a well-ventilated room improves air circulation, therefore, preventing the production of harmful carbon monoxide, which is poisonous and reduces the efficiency of the boiler, causing incomplete fuel combustion. You can build the boiler room on a separate ground to allow ventilation features like open spaces without compromising the safety of your other import and equipment. It would be advisable not to place a wire mesh on the openings as this might ease clogging by dust and papers.
Keep an Operations Log
It is also important to keep a record of everything that happens in the room. An instruction manual guides the engineers and technicians on how to perform required tasks. Every employee or external technician who enters the room for inspection should record their findings in a report and submit it to the relevant authority. These records will help you avoid any potential boiler problems as you can easily identify potential hazards and schedule maintenance on time. Each person managing the boiler room should know how to operate the boiler. You can mount the instructions at the entrance where they are visible to all who enter. Create a checklist as well for checking in and out when in a shift or after each inspection. Having one enables you to trace for the cause in case the boiler malfunctions.
You can improve safety by setting a standard protocol for everyone who visits the boiler room. These protocols should be accompanied with checklists that will help operators to avoid costly mistakes. For example, you can come up with a checklist for properly starting up and shutting down the boiler to minimise the errors and safety issues associated with the process.
Follow these easy tips to manage your commercial boiler room. You can conduct regular pieces of training and drills on your team. Whenever you need to outsource, search for a reliable servicing company such as ourselves at ST Heating Services Limited. We have a reliable team of gas safe registered engineers, contractors and plumbers trained at commercial boiler replacement, installation, purchase and repair. Our services are fast, dependable and of the highest quality.