Steam Boilers

SKU: RVI-11500Duration: 20 Minutes

The purpose of a steam boiler is to create steam by applying heat energy to water. The most common source of heat is that from the combustion of an organic fuel like natural gas, fuel oil or coal. The value of steam in a commercial building is that it is an effective medium for distributing heat throughout a building or even a group of buildings. The combination of a steam boiler and steam distribution system means that all the heat generation can be done efficiently in one location and the steam can be easily distributed to all of the places it is needed for heating. In this interactive online course, we will discuss the function of boilers and steam. We will cover different types of boilers, including fire tube boilers and water tube boilers. We will also discuss combustion and steam traps.

Course Details


Training Time: 20 minutes

Compatibility: Desktop, Tablet, Phone

Based on: Industry Standards and Best Practices

Languages: English

Learning Objectives

  • Describe steam boiler theory
  • Explain the difference between fire tube and water tube boilers
  • Describe some operations and maintenance considerations for a steam boiler
  • Explain combustion, purging and exhaust gas management
  • Describe how adjusting airflow affects flame health

Key Questions

The following key questions are answered in this module:

What is the purpose of a mud drum?
The purpose of a mud drum is to collect solids that will settle out of boiler water.

What is the purpose of a low water cut out?
The purpose of a low water cut out is to shut off the boiler if the water level in the boiler falls to dangerous conditions.

What is the purpose of a thermostat in a F&T steam trap?
The purpose of the thermostat in a F&T steam trap is to allow trapped air to escape when the system is cold.

What is the purpose of a steam boiler?
The purpose of a steam boiler is to create steam by applying heat energy to water.

What are the different classifications of steam trap designs?
The classes of steam trap designs are thermostatic traps, thermodynamic traps, and mechanical traps.

Sample Video Transcript

Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:

There are many different types of steam boilers in the modern world, each adapted to particular applications. Some boilers heat water using electric immersion elements, but the majority use a fuel as a source of heat. The goal of a fuel burning boiler is to efficiently burn the fuel and transfer as much of the heat of combustion as possible into the water and steam within the boiler. The boilers used for commercial heating can be divided into two broad categories: • Fire tube boilers • Water tube boilers Fire tube boilers consist of a combustion chamber and a few sets of straight tubes housed inside a water-filled outer shell. The hot combustion gases exit the combustion chamber and typically reverse direction and flow back toward the burner through a set of tubes surrounded by water. The gases may then exit through an exhaust stack, or reverse flow again and flow through more tubes. Each set of tubes is called a “pass”. The more passes there are, the more efficient the boiler is.
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