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The Problem of Boiler Kettling

Have you ever noticed your boiler rumbling like a giant teapot? It can be more than a little unsettling the first time it happens, but don’t worry too much. Your boiler isn’t going to explode at any moment. It is, however, having a serious issue that needs to be dealt with. That rumbling sound is known as “kettling,” and it can cause a full system breakdown if it isn’t dealt with soon. Let’s take a look at what causes boiler kettling, and what you can do about it.

What Causes Kettling?

Kettling is caused by hard water, which is water that has a higher than normal magnesium and calcium content suspended in it. As hard water flows through the heat exchanger in your boiler, it deposits small amounts of these minerals on the walls of the pipe. These mineral deposits eventually build up into lime scale, which restricts the flow of water through the heat exchanger. Being trapped in the heat exchanger for an extended period of time causes the water to evaporate into steam, triggering it to expand exponentially. This puts an immense amount of pressure on the heat exchanger, which is that rumbling sound you hear.

The Threat of Kettling

The biggest threat that kettling poses is that it can cause your heat exchanger to rupture, spilling water all over the place and seriously damaging the system. The heat exchanger will need to be replaced if this happens, and possibly other parts of the system depending on how much water damage is caused. The best way to avoid this is to call for professional repairs as soon as you hear your boiler kettling.

If your boiler is kettling and needs fast repairs, call Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning. We serve the entire Chicago, IL area.

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