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Costly Commercial re-build

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Posted by Charles on January 11, 2002 at 03:16:18:

I have two steam boilers (making up one unit) that services a nine unit apartment building. We discovered steam spuing from one side of the two steam headed boiler (I thought a union leak). The combination of the two boilers have six or eight boiler plates to produce the steam. We also noticed that the drain valves did not drain (plugged?). Anyway, a service tech came by and told us that there was a leak in the condensate return. This leak lead to constant fresh water being introduced to the boiler. He speculated that calcium has been dropping out of the water and had insulated the plate bottoms. This conclusion from deposits visible on the burners. Anyway, the insulated plate bottom became overheated and cracked some of them, which caused the steam to release. (Hard to believe calcium built up in a matter of months)
My question... If calcium insulates the plates so that heat can not be dissapated and the plates get overheated and cracks... Shouldn't water be flowing out? or could the crack be all the way up in the steam section? Please, this is a six grand question... I don't know what else to think or ask... Thanks.

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