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Does Rust on a Boiler Mean the Boiler Is Finished?

boiler-residentialThe big danger for any appliance that uses water is the onset of rust or another type of corrosion. These are natural chemical reactions when water is in contact with metal in the presence of oxygen. The oxidizing of corrosion weakens the metal—and often leads to appliance failure.

Thankfully, most appliances that use water have precautions taken to keep corrosion away for as long as possible. A residential boiler is one of them. Because a boiler is a closed system, where the same water circulates continuously without the introduction of new water, it can be designed to have no air inside it. With no oxygen present, rust cannot occur.

But this doesn’t mean that a boiler will never rust. Should you notice rust appearing along your boiler tank or at connection points, you might wonder if it means the system should be replaced.

The Answer: Sometimes Yes and Sometimes No

If you detect rust on the boiler, it probably means the heater is suffering from leaks that are not only allowing water to escape, but are permitting air inside the system to promote corrosion. This might be an issue of poor pipe connections that can be fixed before the corrosion spreads farther. Don’t delay with calling for boiler repair in Bellevue, WA when you see leaks of any kind, as well as corrosion.

Unfortunately, if rust has started to spread through the boiler tank, the damage is difficult to repair. In these cases, you’ll probably need to have the entire ank replaced with a new one. Corrosion can also be a sign of basic boiler age. If you have a gas boiler (as most people do), corrosion occurring along the heat exchanger indicates the system  is over the hill and you’ll need boiler replacement. Have experts look at it for an opinion about the best way going forward. But if you boiler is more than 20 years old, a replacement is almost certainly the right choce.

S&L Mechanical Heating and Cooling has 24/7 emergency service available for any heating problem.

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