Boiler Tube Problems and Reasons to Retube

Boiler tubing, regardless of the type of boiler, only survives so long. The tubing needs to be replaced, and often. Both pressure and cracking are responsible for boiler retubing needs. Here are some boiler tube problems, how they occur, and reasons to retube.


Boiler tubes crack because they are constantly exposed to moisture and heat. Rubber and plastic tubing can only withstand so much of that before they start to split. Think about the radiator tubing in your car. It is exposed to similar conditions. When it wears out, it cracks and begins to leak radiator fluid everywhere. The same thing happens with boiler tubing, except that here it just leaks steam and/or extremely hot water.


Tubing that cannot stay connected has been exposed to too much pressure. The tubing has loosened and expanded some from the pressure such that it keeps slipping off. The reduction in pressure from those times when the tubing releases itself causes the boiler to lose internal pressure. Then the boiler does not heat as it should. A short-term solution that can be applied to exposed tubing is to use a metal clamp to hold the tubing in place, but this will not hold forever either.


If the boiler is far too hot for far too long, the tubing can melt. This is not a typical or common issue, but it is still certainly one of which you should be aware. When the tubing melts, it creates a foul stink and can cause a mild fire. The tubing becomes utterly useless, and it has to be cut off and scraped off so that new tubing will fit in its place. 

Scale Buildup

Hard water creates mineral scales. In a boiler, that is bad news. In boiler tubing, the situation is much worse as the scales will cause blockages. 

Reasons for Retubing Boilers

There is the obvious reason, of course; your boiler will not function without its tubing. Damaged tubing should always be replaced. You can prevent injuries and accidents when you retube the boilers. The boilers will run much more effectively and efficiently if you retube them. Boilers have to meet fluctuating demands in use, which is hindered when not all of their components are 100 percent. Finally, boilers are machines that require maintenance, just like any other machine, and taking care of them means that they will last longer and serve your company for a good, long time.