Heating system efficiency checklist
By Brandi Cowen
Niagrow Systems Ltd. has developed a checklist to help greenhouses maximize the efficiency of their heating systems.
“An annual maintenance plan for your greenhouse heating system is very important as illustrated in this seven-point checklist, but it’s also beneficial to keep a supply of repair parts handy in case of emergencies,” writes Duane Van Alstine.
Here are seven areas to keep an eye on in your greenhouse:
- Pipe insulation: Check the pipes in your boiler room. Are they insulated? Where else can you find heating pipes that are warming up an area unnecessarily?
- Pump and valve check: Make a visual inspection of all valves and pumps in your heating system.
- Review your climate control settings: Take a closer look at sunset times and the measures you can make to compensate for sudden temperature drops.
- Sensor and gauge testing: In most areas where there is a gauge, there is also a sensor. By looking at the gauge and comparing that with what the sensor is recording you can easily determine if all is accurate or one is reading false.
- Annual burner and boiler checkup: A thorough checkup of all burners and boilers in your operation by a qualified technician is essential in maintaining system efficiency.
- Keep a clutter-free boiler room: Obstructions placed in front of the combustion air openings restrict the free flow of air into the boiler room and may cause the burner to not get enough air for proper combustion.
- Check steam valves: The only way to determine the state of a valve is to remove it from the system and determine visually if it is working properly (unless it is obviously leaking). Develop a routine of manually cycling valves in the off season.
“The best kept heating system can still have its unexpected failures and spare valves, gaskets, seals, gauges and sensors would aid in dealing with these emergencies. The extra cost of keeping an extra parts supply would pale in comparison to the peace of mind that preparation would provide,” Duane Van Alstine writes.
Click here to read the complete checklist from Niagrow.