We have a low pressure steam boiler that we use for wort boiling and CIP. We have a separate boiler for hot liquor. Over the past couple of years I've had several HVAC guys tell me that we are causing problems with the boiler, increasing maintenance costs, decreasing boiler life and using more treatment chemicals than necessary because of our practice of shutting down the boiler when it is not needed. They all suggest that we'd be better off in the long run keeping it up all the time. They also recognize the inherent costs associated with this practice. I just ran a test and it looks like it costs us about $5/day to idle the boiler.
I'm curious what most people's standard practice is? Right now we probably run the boiler for somewhere between 3 and 12 hours a day about 5 days a week and that quantity is growing. I'm wondering when we reach the point that it makes sense to keep it up 24/7.
Free State Brewing Co.