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Talking About Welding Equipment and Techniques

Hi there. I’m Nina. Welcome to my website about welding. The process of welding together metal takes a lot more than a hot iron and some metal wire. There are many different machines and practices people use to carefully and skillfully weld together metal. With the right techniques, you can create truly beautiful welds that hold up to the test of time. The strong metal welds are often stronger than the two metal pieces they join together. I would like to use this site to talk about the different types of welding equipment, techniques and safety gear used for this exciting industry. Thanks for visiting.

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Talking About Welding Equipment and Techniques

How to Inspect & Clean an Inverted Bucket Steam Trap in a Boiler System

by Matias Keranen

Steam recovery from condensate is important to maintaining a high-efficiency operation when using a boiler. It is mechanically simple and reliable, and is a proven performer in steam/condensate separation processes. However, as with all mechanical devices, periodic inspection and maintenance is important. Below is a step-by-step procedure for performing these tasks:

Tools & Materials Needed

  • Ratchet and socket set
  • Steel wire brush
  • Plastic bristled brush
  • Replacement gasket
  • Clean bucket
  • Acetic acid or other mild acidic solvent
  • Screwdriver set
  • Shop towel
  • Mineral spirits
  • Eye protection
  • Gloves


1. Remember that safety is paramount when working with steam—Always depressurize a steam trap that is being maintained by following the proper idling or bypass procedures. Never attempt to open a trap while in use, or you may suffer severe burns or be injured by flying trap components. Wear safety glasses and gloves at all times to protect yourself from unexpected dangers.

2. Open the trap—The cover on steam traps is secured by multiple bolts, usually six in number. Match the appropriate socket size to the bolt heads, and begin to remove the bolts. If they are frozen due to rust or scaling, loosen the bolt heads with a few light blows from a ball-peen hammer. Be careful not to strike the bolts too hard, or you may damage the trap. Carefully pull the cover off the trap housing, as it will be attached to the valve seat, linkage and inverted bucket.

3. Inspect the valve seat and its linkage—Once you remove the trap cover and interior components, make a close inspection of the valve seat, its linkage and the bucket. Look for signs of excessive wear, particularly along the lower edge of the bucket and the areas where the linkage rotates on a hinge or shaft.

In addition, inspect the bucket's steam bleed hole, a small hole located on the top-side of the inverted bucket. If it appears to be blocked, use a steel wire brush to clean it thoroughly. If the hole is eroded and enlarged, then you will need to install a replacement bucket.

Finally, take a close look at the valve seat to be sure the linkage rotates into position and forms an even, tight seal. If any of the parts don't align properly, you will need to purchase replacements from the manufacturer.

4. Clean the linkage and bucket—After inspecting the parts for continued usability, then place them inside a clean bucket and cover them with acetic acid to remove any scale accumulation caused by hard water. Allow the parts to soak for two-to-three hours, then remove them and rinse them in clean water. Use a plastic bristled brush to remove loosened debris from the components.

5. Clean the gasket surface and replace the gasket—With a steel wire brush, vigorously brush the mating surfaces of the cover and trap housing to remove the gasket and residue. Use an appropriate solvent, such as mineral spirits, if you have stubborn areas that need additional cleaning. Wipe away any residue with a shop towel, then seat a new gasket on the trap housing surface.

6. Reassemble the trap—Once the the gasket is in position on the trap housing, carefully lower the trap cover and its attached components into the housing. Insert the bolts into the holes of the cover and housing and tighten them using a criss-cross pattern. Tighten each bolt a little at a time as you work through the pattern until each one is sufficiently tight.

You can always click here for more info on how to successfully get the job done, or you can contact local professionals for a temporary boiler rental until your normal boiler is fixed.