Resources // Boiler Maintenance

Prepping your Boiler for Fuel Oil


As much as we don’t want to think about the plunging temperatures, the reality here in the Upper Midwest is… it’s coming.

Boiler Fuel Oil

For many of us, the cost of Natural Gas is held lower because we have a stand-by fuel like Heating Oil to take advantage of the interruptible rate offered by the utilities.

You need that fuel most when the temperatures drop, and you get the call from the gas company that you are being curtailed.

While the frequency of curtailment has diminished, it remains important that you be ready.  You need to be ready to burn your stand-by fuel or your Natural Gas price per unit will go up by as much as 10 times if you are burning gas during curtailment.  That can be a huge financial hurdle to overcome.

Change the Oil Filter

If fuel oil is your standby energy source in the boiler room, get the unit ready to run on oil today.

1. Check your oil. Is the tank full? Oil tanks are not fully resilient to water with ]condensation and rainwater. Check for water, make sure only oil is in your tank. If there is water present, follow the proper environmental steps to dispose of the water-contaminated fuel properly.

2. Open and check all the Oil Strainers. Clean the Strainers and change any Filters.

Check the Oil Nozzle

3. Operate the Oil Pump. Make sure the seals are not leaking and the Piping is dry.

4. Check to make sure the Oil Pressure and Vacuum Gauges are in place and working.

5. Inspect your Oil Nozzle. Make sure it is clean and the opening does not show any damage such as nicks or scratches. Remember, some Oil Nozzles have filters too. Remove the nozzle to make sure that the filter is clean. If you have any concerns, replace the nozzle.

Check combustion after starting the boiler on oil

6. Atomizing media. If your burner has compressed air for an atomizing media, make sure the oil level in the air pump is up to snuff. Make sure the intake filter is clean. Ensure all the pressure gauges on the compressor are working and accurate. Make sure the compressor runs and is generating pressure.

7. Start the boiler on oil. Check the combustion and make sure it is tuned up and ready to go

Anything you can do in advance of a cold snap and Gas Company curtailment the better you will be able to avoid those extra costs.

Stay ready, stay warm, and contact us if you have any questions.

boiler room gauge

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