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As we all know, fuel is not cheap and costs are on the rise. Energy inefficiency in a boiler system is caused not only by an aging system, but also by heat loss. The more inefficient the boiler, the higher the fuel costs; but there are ways to combat this problem and reclaim the lost heat and reduce facility operating costs. Below are 10 tips that can be used to educate plant and facility managers on how to maximize boiler performance:


  1. Maintain, Maintain, Maintain – following manufacturer recommendations on annual boiler maintenance is the easiest way to ensure the boiler will continue to run efficiently.
  2. Proper Water Treatment – if water treatment is not done correctly, you will see a loss in heat transfer ability due to particulates clogging up internal boiler tubes. A deaerator can be used in most applications to increase water temperature and remove most of the particulates from the water.
  3. Install a High Turndown Burner – this will increase energy savings by reducing on/of cycles.
  4. Add Variable-Speed Drive Controls – installing these controls on the boiler feed pumps will enable a motor to operate only at the required speed at any given moment and save energy by allowing an operator to fine-tune the system to run at optimal conditions.
  5. Incorporate Parallel Positioning – doing so will allow the burner to maintain excess air levels more precisely and the boiler to run at its most capable efficiency point.
  6. Include O2 Trim – adding an oxygen sensor/transmitter in the exhaust gas will maintain peak efficiency by minimizing excess air and optimize the air-to-fuel ratio.
  7. Integrate Lead/Lag – this enables boilers to operate in sync with fluctuating steam loads by sequencing the operation of multiple boilers and matching system load.
  8. Incorporate an Economizer – incorporating heat recovery into a boiler system will improve efficiency, and an economizer can increase efficiency up to 8 percent. Depending on the boiler type, fuel used and operating conditions, a standard or condensing economizer can be installed.
  9. Recover and Repurpose Heat from Blowdown – you can do this one of two ways; by installing a blowdown heat recovery unit or a flash economizer. Both will capture heat and reuse it, with typical payback seen in less than a year.
  10. Use Exchangers to Preheat Inlet Water – similar to a blowdown heat recovery unit, an exchanger can be added to preheat a boiler feedwater system or deaerator.


View Process Heating’s Article for a more in-depth explanation of each tip.

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Nationwide Boiler stays current with the latest news and information relating to the development of energy efficiency technology.  Last week the Energy Department announced up to $10 million in funding to advance the production of advanced biofuels, substitutes for petroleum-based feedstocks, and bioproducts made from renewable, non-food-based biomass, such as agricultural residues and woody biomass. As mentioned on the website, "This supports the Department’s efforts to make drop-in biofuels more accessible and affordable, as well as meet the cost target equivalent of $3.00 per gallon of gasoline by 2022."  In addition, "Advancing and commercializing cost-competitive biofuels will help the Department work toward its goal of reducing current petroleum consumption in the United States by approximately 30%, and, in turn, enhance U.S. national security and reduce carbon emissions."

For more information and application requirements, visit the Funding Opportunity Exchange website.


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Nationwide Boiler just received this event notice from the DOE.  This meeting is focused on general discussions from leader sin the west relating to the development of greater industrial energy efficiency and combined heat and power.  Additional details and sign up information provided below.

Western Dialogue on Industrial Energy Efficiency and Combined Heat & Power

Time is running out. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to hear from leaders in the western region – REGISTER TODAY!

The Advanced Manufacturing Office is pleased to announce the fourth and final, in a series, of regional dialogue meetings scheduled for October 29, 2013 in Salt Lake City, Utah .  The Western Regional Dialogue on Industrial Energy Efficiency and Combined Heat & Power (CHP) is being held in support of the August 2012 Executive Order signed by President Obama. These one-day dialogue meetings focus on developing and implementing state best practice policies and investment models to address the multiple barriers that inhibit greater investment in energy efficiency and CHP. This meeting, which focuses on the West, will be held in Salt Lake City, Utah, on October 29, 2013. It will include an optional tour of the University of Utah’s CHP system. The meeting will feature Bill Ritter, Director of the Center for the Clean Energy Economy at Colorado State University and former governor of the State of Colorado, as the keynote speaker. Prior Regional Dialogue meetings in support of the Executive Order include Columbus Ohio, June 2012, Little Rock, AR, January 2013 and Baltimore, MD, March 2013.

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Last week the White House announced an executive order supporting Combined Heat & Power (CHP) and industrial energy efficiency.  The order calls for a national combined heat and power deployment goal of an additional 40 GW by 2020.

CHP systems can reach efficiencies above eighty percent (80%) and currently supply twelve percent (12%) of U.S. energy capacity. There is approximately 82 GW of CHP installed in the U.S. and industry estimates indicate the technical potential for additional CHP at existing sites in the U.S. is approximately 130 GW (plus an additional 10 GW of waste heat recovery CHP).

Investments in industrial energy efficiency, including combined heat and power, offer significant benefits to manufacturers, utilities and communities across the country, including:

    • Manufacturers could save at least $100 billion in energy costs over the next decade, improving U.S. manufacturing competitiveness


    • Meeting the 2020 goal could mean $40 to $80 billion of new capital investment in American manufacturing facilities and helps to create jobs


    • Offering a low-cost approach to new electricity generation capacity to meet current and future demand:  Investments in IEE, including CHP, cost as much as 50% less than traditional forms of delivered new baseload power


    • Significantly lowers emissions:  Improved efficiency can reduce nationwide GHG emissions and other criteria pollutants.

USCHPA Executive Director, Jessica Bridges, said "CHP technology can be deployed quickly, cost-effectively and with few geographic restrictions. Establishing this national goal toward greater CHP deployment will significantly advance cleaner energy generation in the U.S., benefit the environment, and help create much-needed manufacturing and industrial jobs. I applaud the White House for its efforts to support clean power generation through CHP and pledge the combined heat and power industry's support to help achieve this goal."

USCHPA is a trade association whose membership includes manufacturers, suppliers, and developers of combined heat and power (CHP) systems.  CHP lowers demand on the electricity delivery system, reduces reliance on traditional energy supplies, makes businesses more competitive by lowering their energy costs, reduces greenhouse gas and criteria pollutant emissions, and refocuses infrastructure investments toward next-generation energy systems. CHP is a proven and effective energy resource that can be immediately deployed to help address current and future global energy needs by incorporating commercially available and domestically produced technology.  For more information, visit

In support of the Executive Order, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency released a new report Combined Heat and Power: A Clean Energy Solution  that provides a foundation for national discussions on effective ways to achieve 40 GW of new, cost-effective CHP by 2020, and includes an overview of the key issues currently impacting CHP deployment and the factors that need to be considered by stakeholders involved in the dialogue.

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