One Hurdle Crossed: New Pool Boiler Fixes Temperature Anomalies

Swimmers at Lebanon Community Pool might notice a temperature adjustment in the facility and pools now that an aging boiler has been replaced.

The Lebanon Aquatic District shut down the facility and replaced the boiler with a double boiler system during spring break.

Workers install a new double boiler system at the Lebanon Community Pool during spring break. Photos by Sarah Browb

The pool’s boiler was one among many maintenance and repair hurdles the district has been facing and, in fact, the recent ice storm in mid-January caused ice to form on the heater coils in the men’s locker room. Executive Director Lorlee Engler said at the LAD board meeting on Jan. 22 that the boiler “conked out,” which prevented the swimming pool building from having any heat, and the cold weather got into the pipes, effectively breaking the heater in the men’s locker room.

During the LAD board meeting on April 15, Engler said it took the two weeks to complete the installation and bring the pool temperatures back to proper range.

Engler reported there used to be a “lake” of water below the old boiler, the heat exchanger had a small crack that was starting to leak, the flue piping was rounded out and leaking, the control board failed, there was a gas leak, and the flame sensor had to be replaced.

The company that replaced the boiler told Engler the type of boiler they removed generally lasts 10 to 15 years and theirs was “going to blow up at any time.” The boiler was about 13 years old.

“We’ve been limping this thing along for this last year,” she said.

Engler is trying to get some financial incentives from the Oregon Energy Trust for replacement of the boiler. The total bill for the boiler is expected to be about $88,000. So far the district has paid $55,000 toward the replacement.

With the new boiler, Engler noted the whole building is noticeably evenly warmer, whereas before there used to be hot and cold spots throughout.

In other business, the board:

◆ Approved a proposed lease agreement renewal with the Lebanon School District for the pool facility;

◆ Reviewed applicants and filled two vacant seats for the budget committee;

◆ Heard Western University is partnering with Lebanon Community Pool to conduct a research project on the benefits of aqua yoga;

◆ Heard an update on progress with the fundraising committee. Laurie Dennis reported the committee is working on getting yard signs created and forming a 501(c)3 to properly manage proceeds earmarked for pool renovations. The committee has plans for two events, a “Splash for Cash” a pledge-style fundraiser on May 18 and a carnival-style end-of-summer event on Aug. 24.