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How Corrosion Affects Your Boiler

gas-boiler-serviceFor the most part, you can trust technicians to diagnose and repair any issues with your heater. Local technicians know the ins and outs of boilers already, and there is little you need to know about aside from the basics of keeping your boiler maintained. But a big part of this should involve keeping boiler corrosion under control.

Corrosion can be a death sentence for your boiler. Here’s what you should know about how corrosion affects a hydronic (hot water) system, as well as what you can, and should, do about the problem.

The Cause

Corrosion is something that happens naturally with time in many metals, but that boilers are designed to prevent. Your boiler should last 15 years or much longer, as should the pipes that lead out from it. But if you don’t pay attention to the quality of the water moving through it, this is compromised.

Corrosion occurs with the interaction of water, oxygen, and the boiler metal, which allows for the formation of ferrous oxide (rust). One of the main causes of boiler corrosion is when oxygen is able to get through to the tank. Another cause is a low pH level in the water. However it happens, the results can be tremendous.

Holes in the boiler surface

Once a boiler begins to rust, there’s not really a way to stop it or make it go away. Eventually, the corrosion spreads out, thinning the metal until holes form along the boiler tank. This usually happens from the inside out, though corrosion could potentially form outside of the tank. This leads to major leaks that can damage your home.


Pitted corrosion is another concern, in which small holes form, often along the pipes leading out of the boiler. Pitted corrosion can go unnoticed for a long time, so it slowly damages a home and reduces the boiler’s ability to heat your home.

Loss in boiler efficiency

Even slower corrosion can reduce a boiler’s ability to transfer heat to the spaces in your home. That reduced heat transfer means your boiler has to work harder and run for longer. You pay more for heating even though you’re less comfortable!

Reduced system lifespan

As we’ve mentioned, once boiler corrosion gets out of control, there’s nothing you can do to fix the problem. A corroded boiler will likely need replacement far sooner than you expected—a good reason to get the issue under control.

The Solutions

There are three ways to prevent boiler corrosion from ending your system’s lifespan.

  • Proper system installation in the first place.
  • Treating the boiler feedwater.
  • Regular boiler maintenance.

Your technician can help you decide how to treat your boiler water in the most effective way. What’s most important is that you keep up with regular maintenance sessions. This way, a technician can monitor the condition of the furnace and make improvements that could help the performance and efficiency of the system, as well as prevent corrosion.

Get your routine maintenance or heater repair in Ridley Township, PA from Murphy’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning.

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