The Best Boiler Technician Tools
Most of the equipment you'll need to maintain the high efficiency boilers you've installed as a competent tradesperson are already in your toolbox, but you should consider purchasing a few specialized tools. A lack of the proper tool can make removing some fasteners difficult, which can lead to frustration and reduced productivity. When I first started cleaning Lochinvar WHN Knight boilers, the nuts that hold the blower to the top plate were so tough for me to remove that it took me nearly three hours. There are a slew of specific tools I've learned to use when cleaning over two dozen distinct boiler models.
Using a 4mm Allen Wrench with a long reach, you can slide the wrench into the combustion fan to access one of the screws securing the fan to the top plate.
When it comes to boiler cleaning, Chapman's Mini Ratchet is a must-have tool. To remove the gas valve and fan, simply use this tool.
Remove the nuts holding the burner plate to the heat exchanger with a 4-in-1 ratcheting wrench. Slim design slides under combustion fan; ratchet mechanism eliminates need to move wrench when nut is hidden from view.
The Milwaukee Wet/Dry Vac is ideal for cleaning boilers. Several aspects make this a useful tool. To begin with, it is quite effective at removing all of the combustion products from the air. You can suck out the condensate without having to remove the condensate trap thanks to the condensate nozzle. Third, you can use the vacuum as a blower to extinguish all of the fire tubes.
A torx multi-tool is a must-have if you work with fasteners that require torx drivers. Many of the connectors used by boiler manufacturers are T20 & T25. The T20 ignitor and flame sensor are almost universally used.
For blowing out the burner and combustion fan, I use an inflator from Milwaukee along with a 5 gallon portable air tank. In comparison to carrying around a compressor or worse, trying to use one of those little dust spray cans, I find this method far more convenient.
The Lochinvar Cleaning Kit 100157627 is available at your local Lochinvar dealer. A nylon brush, an extension, and a refractory plate cover are included in this package. The Giannoni water tube heat exchanger is easy to clean with this kit.
Clean F-Steel by Axiom is available. The employment of chemicals to clean the heat exchanger has been a point of contention for this product's proponents. Having tested it on a few boilers, I can attest to its efficacy. For stubborn deposits that won't come out with simply water, I'll use this product to clean them.
Fabuloso - This is my weapon of choice. I borrowed this idea from a contractor I had previously worked with. Once, I went to start one of his projects and was astounded by how fresh and clean the boiler room smelled. I wanted to ensure that all of my customers felt the same way after the encounter that I had. In order to keep the boiler room smelling and looking clean, I use Fabuloso to clean all of the exterior surfaces. This includes the pipes, circulators, expansion tank, and indirects. If you want to show your respect for the boiler, this is an easy and time-saving procedure that doesn't affect the boiler's ability to function.
This list would cost between $300 and $400 in total, based on my calculations. After just one cleaning in most marketplaces, they would pay for themselves. You will realize the benefits of these boiler technician tools once they are purchased and integrated into your standard set. My next piece will cover the financials of boiler cleaning services, and you'll see how the additional money from boiler cleaning flows right to your bottom line because your overhead and variable costs are so low. Stay tuned.