Boiler Losses

That Eat Away Your Profits

Boiler Losses That Eat Away Your Profits

Every boiler operator's or user's main goal is to conserve fuel and utilize as much heat energy as possible. We are all aware that there is no complete conversion of fuel energy to thermal energy. The process of heat transfer and steam generation results in numerous losses. Losses may be caused by the moisture content in the fuel, the high temperature of the stack gases, the material's low conductivity, or impurities in the feed water. Every boiler-related loss directly affects the amount of fuel consumed, raising operating costs. In order to optimize the operation of the boiler, it is also crucial for a boiler operator to be aware of the losses. The major issue for the industry is to reduce losses as much as possible. Loss minimization and loss reduction are more difficult when there is a lack of knowledge. It causes them to continually lose money.

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Every user of a boiler should be aware of some of the significant losses linked to boiler operation, which include the following:

Loss due to dry flue gas

The temperature of the flue gas is one of the main sources of energy losses during boiler operation. Flue gases carry heat with them and release it into the environment because their temperature is higher than the ambient temperature. The loss will be greater the higher the flue gas temperature.

Although it is not practical to have flue gas temperatures that are identical to their surroundings, they should nonetheless be kept as low as feasible.

It is defined as the difference between the enthalpy of flue gases emitted out of the boiler and the enthalpy of flue gases cooled down to the ambient temperature per amount of heat produced by 1 kg of fuel.

Loss due to moisture in fuel

Coal, briquettes, and husk are examples of solid fuel that are particularly effective at absorbing moisture from the air. The fuel's calorific value and combustion efficiency are both decreased by this moisture. When this moist fuel is burned in the furnace, water vapor is produced in the flue gases, which lowers the stack temperature.

Loss due to excess air

Despite the fact that air is necessary for complete fuel combustion, utilizing more air than is required could be costly since excess air is cooler than required and absorbs heat from the fuel flame. It further causes the heat transfer to the boiler to be reduced. This air, along with waste flue gases, carries this heat away. As a result, boiler systems waste energy when there is too much air. For every 10% reduction in excess air, boiler efficiency increases by 0.5%.

Heat loss due to incomplete combustion

The supply of air provides the oxygen needed for continuous and complete fuel burning. In total combustion, carbon and oxygen react to form carbon dioxide, while hydrogen and carbon dioxide react to form water. When there is insufficient air, carbon is oxidised, producing CO instead, which produces less heat and results in incomplete combustion.

Bottom ash loss

Bottom Ash Loss can be determined using the temperature and carbon content of the ash and is dependent on the properties of the coal. The carbon in the ash is what truly matters, not its temperature, which only has a modest impact on ash loss. The related bottom ash energy loss at 350 oC, assuming a 22 percent carbon content in the ash, will typically be as follows:

Carbon energy loss equals 3,6%

Ash temperature loss is equal to 0.18%.

4,78% of the bottom was lost to ash.


From the aforementioned reasons, it is obvious that these losses might have a negative impact on the operation of the boiler and the organization's earnings. The reduction of these losses is crucial.

Therefore, whether you are a boiler operator, user, or planning to purchase a new boiler but are unsure on how to choose the boiler, feel free to contact us. A variety of energy-efficient boilers are offered by THERMODYNE ENGINEERING SYSTEMS.