During the summer months, the temperature in a boiler room can rise to anywhere between 80 and 100 degrees Fahreinheit if not properly ventilated and cooled. Most boiler rooms don’t have temperature control, making ventilation a must for two important reasons: personal safety and equipment function.
Don’t Sweat It
Personal safety always comes first. When working in a hot and humid boiler room, it’s easy to become dehydrated and/or suffer heat-related illness if you don’t take care of yourself. It’s common knowledge that drinking water is important, but few techs take time to do it properly as they’re too busy or prefer sugar drinks. Medical experts recommend drinking a gallon of water a day. Working in a hot boiler room, it’s all the more important to make sure you’re getting the necessary fluids to avoid dehydration that can also lead to an accident from loss of cognitive function. You have to put yourself first; nothing is worth you getting hurt.
Don’t Let Equipment Lose Its Cool
Secondly, the equipment inside the boiler room is not immune to the temperature rise. Most electronics are rated for max temperatures between 120 and 140 degrees, but will see a diminished lifespan if operated in those temperatures for extended periods of time. The burner controls and screens on the electrical cabinets are most susceptible to high temperatures. A burner control can have intermittent or total failures from overheating, cutting short the lifespan it would have enjoyed in a cooler environment. To keep electrical cabinets cool, devices such as fans or compressed air coolers need to be installed. They move air through the cabinet, pulling the heat out and replacing it with cooler air. These cooling devices also need to be maintained, so be sure to add them to your summer maintenance checklist.
Next time you’re working in a boiler room with elevated temperatures, remember that your health comes first. Watch your water intake and take breaks as needed. Then remember to check the cabinet cooling devices for functionality and recommend any improvements that might keep the customer equipment running longer.