Plumbing, Heating and Pool Repair Guides

How To Clean An Oil Fired Boiler


WeT HeaD KnowledgeCleaning a boiler is a dirty job and should only be done by a licensed pluming or heating professional but let’s talk about how a oil fired boiler would get cleaned by that oil burner service man.

There are several things that are done when fully cleaning and serving an oil burner, although most people think its just a matter of vacuuming out the soot when there is actually a lot more to it then that. This is exactly why only a certified or licensed professional should be doing the work. Let’s now talk about what will be done and how to clean a boiler. The materials that will be need to fully clean and maintain the boiler will be a new oil pump filter, oil line filter, new burner nozzle and possibly new electrodes depending on their condition. The boiler will also have be vacuumed out and that will have to be done with a special vacuum that is made for soot. These vacuums have special filters inside so that the soot does not return to the air when removing the fine soot ash from inside of the oil burner.

How To Adjust The Flame On An Oil Fired Boiler:

The Flame on your oil burner should only be adjusted by a licensed or certified heating professional. The way that the oil heating service professional will adjust the flame is by opening or closing the air vents on the side of the oil burner blower. The amount of air to fuel mixture will determine the adjustment that the flame needs to be set at. This is not something that the average homeowner can do or even should try doing. Just a hire a local oil boiler repair company to come fix it for you. they generally charge around $75 – $150 depending on how out of shape your boiler is.

How Do Adjust The Electrodes On An Oil Burner:

The electrodes should only be adjusted by a licensed professional as well. There are adjustments that need to be made and you will have to look for the manufactures recommend setting in the manual that came with the boiler or on the side of the unit. The basic way to set the electrodes is to make them flush with the plane of the oil burner nozzle. You will want to set the gap from between 1/8 to 3/16 of an inch. Some tricks of the trade in the oil burner field is to just to slide two pennies through the gap and that will be the exact thickness if you don’t have a ruler.You do not have to set the height of the electrodes because once you re-install them the height will self adjust. One thing to look out for is to try to set it between the top of the oil burner nozzle and the flame retention ring. Spark from the electrodes must not jump to the ring.

How To Vacuum An Oil Fired Boiler And Remove The Soot:

The oil fired boiler is a bit different from a gas fired boiler because natural gas does not leave soot as when burning so therefor you will never have soot build ups like you will on an oil fired boiler The boiler will need to be cleaned out with a vacuum called a “Soot Master vacuum”. This type of vacuum has a special filter so that the soot does not go into the air. To vacuum the boiler you will need to remove the boiler jacket. Once you remove the boiler jacket you will have to vacuum the boiler tubes and baffles until they are free of soot.

How To Change The Oil Pump Filter:

The oil pump strainer filter will be changed at the time of servicing your boiler as well. This filter is located on the side of the oil pump and can be removed by removing the bolts on the outer cover of the pump casing. This oil burner pump filter clogs just as easy and fast when you run out of oil or just for prolonged continuous use. Replacing your oil pump filter will help your oil burner run more efficient.

Is There An Preventive Maintenance Additive That I can Put In The Fuel Oil?

Yes, In fact there is and the oil burner company called Beckett makes something called FuelArmor. This product comes in a 8oz bottle and treats up to 1,000 gallons. The Beckett Corp says it will really help with sludge and tank build up. Oil heat can be a great way to heat your home or business and with the proper system maintenance it can give you years and years of trouble free service. The best way to keep your oil burner running its best is to have it serviced twice a year by an oil burner service company. Many oil burner service shops offer service contacts that can save you money.


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