5 Surprising Purposes of Steam Boilers

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Have you ever wondered how the world we live in is now so convenient and advanced? Thanks to the brilliant minds of the past generations, we now live a comfortable and easier life. A lot of geniuses invented different types of machinery that made living better. One of those is steam boilers. 

Now that we benefit from these advancements, it’s easy to disregard how important they are. Most of us have been benefiting from different types of machinery from the moment we were born. It’s true that when you’re used to something, you tend to ignore its purpose. 

Unfortunately, steam boilers are one of those that are often overlooked. People know that they exist, but don’t exactly know what for. Some even have the connotation that steam boilers are an ancient type of machinery. They were indeed invented and popularised back in the 1700s. But, up to this day, they are thriving and keeping businesses in operation.

To get an overview of how useful and important steam boilers are, here are some of their surprising purposes. 


For heat and temperature during the winter season

One of the top uses of steam boilers is for heat and temperature purposes. Just by looking at its name, you can already get the idea that it is made to produce steam. Steam boilers are used to provide warm temperatures in buildings and other properties once the cold kicks in.

In offices, hotels, resorts, and even residential properties, steam boilers are used. If a property is not using an electric heater, they are likely relying on steam boilers to produce heat. Isn’t it nice to seek comfort in buildings once you’ve been out in the snow for a couple of hours? Thanks to steam boilers, you get to prevent frostbite from occurring before it even starts. 

If you know someone who lives in an apartment building, try to ask them if the building uses steam boilers to provide heat for its units. It would be interesting to know how they utilise it if ever they’re using one.


For hot water supply

Steam boilers are also very efficient when it comes to supplying hot water. If a building uses a boiler for warm temperature purposes, it is also likely that they are using it for hot water supply. Most especially, big properties that service a lot of people.

In resorts and hotels, they use the same steam boiler size that is used in power stations to heat their pools. You might think that it’s a bit of a stretch to say that huge sized boilers are used just for pools. But, it’s true. Especially if you’re using it for big sized pools that need continuous heat supply. 

Jacuzzis, water spas, and saunas are some of the recreational equipment that uses steam boilers. If you ever drop by a water spa resort, try to ask their staff how they supply hot water for those. The probability that you’ll get an answer of ‘steam boilers’ is high, and you’ll surely start to see resorts differently and with awe from then. 


For various processes in different industries

One of the most critical purposes of steam boilers is their work in process industries. A lot of food that we consume daily undergoes processes that make it safe for human consumption. From the milk that we drink to the meat that we eat, they all use boilers for food quality assurance. 

The process industry is a vast field that serves as an umbrella to different sectors under it. One of which is chemical processes. The medicine that we drink undergoes several processes to break down important molecules to produce an efficient pill. In chemical processes industries, two types of boilers are likely used.

Fire-tube boiler and water-tube boiler are the most common boiler types that are often used in process industries. Compared to fire tubes, water-tube boilers are capable of producing higher temperatures and pressures needed for certain chemicals for production. Both fire-tube and water-tube boilers are efficient but have different levels of capacity that should be used accordingly.

For milk production, steam boilers are used for pasteurisation. Even in breweries and distilleries, boilers are utilised. Steam boilers play an important role in the distillation of beer and alcohol production. 


For sanitation and sterilisation 

One important factor needed in disinfection and sterilisation is heat. And, you know by now that steam boilers are an expert in that. Aside from heat and hot water supply, big businesses like hotels and resorts use boilers for sanitation.

There are steam boilers that are used specifically for laundry. In hospitals and hotels, hundreds to thousands of people come in and out daily. That means, millions of bacterias and viruses are being transferred and passed around those properties daily as well.

It is critical for hospitals to sanitise and disinfect all of the equipment and tools that are used for every patient. For sheets, mattresses, metal tools, and medical uniforms, steam boilers are used. Their power to produce constant and high temperatures makes them a piece of machinery that is vital for sanitation and sterilisation purposes.


For generating power 

Lastly, boilers are utilised in steam engines and steam turbines to generate power. Originally, boilers were invented to generate power for trains. It was popularised due to its efficiency for steam engines. 

In submarines, boilers generate power for steam turbines, too. In other technical and manufacturing industries, they use steam boilers for electricity.


Steam boilers are indeed one of the machinery powerhouses that keep businesses alive.

Now that we’ve discussed the purposes of steam boilers, it’s safe to say that they are one of the vital machinery that keeps the economy going. Without them, an industry’s performance will be affected. If an industry is affected, consumer behaviour and needs will be at risk. Surely, it will be hard for businesses to survive without steam boilers in the picture. 


About the author:

Bianca Banda is a writer for Trilogy Boilers Australia, a veteran in specialized boiler and burner installations, servicing, engineering, industrial gas plumbing, and more.

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