Boiler Safety Frequently Asked Questions


Services and Functions

1. What are the key services and functions of the Boiler Safety program?

Licensing

Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) processes applications, administers examinations, commissions boiler inspectors, and issues certificates of operation. TDLR also commissions deputy boiler inspectors and authorized inspectors. Deputy boiler inspectors are employed by TDLR to perform certificate inspections and special inspections, and authorized inspectors are employed by private sector authorized inspection agencies to perform certificate inspections. TDLR issues certificates of operation ranging from one to three years for boilers throughout the state. Certificates of operation are issued to boilers found to be in safe condition for operation. TDLR also coordinates the activities of the Board of Boiler Rules.

Enforcement

TDLR is the primary enforcement authority for complaints against the boiler industry. The most common complaints involve failure to get an inspection and failure to pay inspection fees. TDLR investigates and resolves complaints, conducts hearings, and may impose administrative penalties and sanctions if a violation has occurred.

Inspections

TDLR requires each boiler to be inspected internally (if applicable) and externally at the time of installation and at subsequent intervals. TDLR also reviews and maintains summary reports of the in-service inspections of nuclear boilers that are submitted by the owner or operator. TDLR performs reviews of boiler manufacture and repair facilities and owner/operators located in the state for accreditation by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors, or TDLR. TDLR also performs boiler accident investigations.

Communication

TDLR offers a variety of methods to access information and services via the TDLR website, Facebook, Twitter, program brochures, Commission and Advisory Board meetings, external focus groups, press releases, a toll-free number, and an e-mail list server subscription.

2. When and for what purpose was the program created?

The Boiler Safety program was created in 1937 and is codified in Chapter 755 of the Texas Health and Safety Code (the Code). The program was created to protect Texans through the safe operation and frequent inspection of boilers. The impetus for this regulation was the New London School explosion in 1937, which killed approximately 300 school children and teachers.

In 1958, the boiler regulations were changed to encompass low-pressure steam heating boilers installed in public and private schools, colleges, universities, or county courthouses. In 1969, regulations were changed to include provisions for special inspections. In 1972, regulations were changed to require that all boilers (except cast iron) must be registered with the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors. In 1977, the Legislature adopted the sections of the ASME code relating to nuclear boilers, bringing them under the regulation of the Texas Boiler Law. In 1989, the Texas Boiler Law, Texas Civil Statutes, Article 5221c, was codified into the Health and Safety Code, Chapter 755.

Despite advances in technology, boilers are still being used to heat water and generate steam. Because these processes are inherently dangerous, regulation of the boiler industry will continue to be needed to ensure boilers are properly maintained and operated.

3. Where are boilers used? How many boilers are in operation in Texas?

Boilers are used in commercial facilities, such as dry cleaners, car washes, and power plants. Additionally, boilers are found in schools, hospitals, and office buildings. The regulated population includes approximately 54,000 boilers and 250 inspectors.

4. How is this program administered?

The Regulatory Program Management division oversees the boiler inspection process and provides program expertise.

The Licensing division handles the certification process, including issuing certificates of operation, administering examinations, and inspector commissions.

The Enforcement division investigates and resolves any complaints. Any alleged violations that are not resolved by the Enforcement division are referred to prosecutors within the Legal Services division to be resolved through the administrative hearing process.

In addition to the Chief Boiler Inspector and three Boiler Inspection Specialists, TDLR has fourteen Deputy Boiler Inspectors throughout the state whose primary responsibility is inspecting uninsured boilers. These inspectors are currently located in San Antonio, Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth, Lubbock, East Texas, Austin, and El Paso.

TDLR also relies on the expertise and advice of the Board of Boiler Rules for the administration of this program.

5. How does the Boiler Safety program work with federal and local agencies?

The Boiler Safety program works with the Texas Education Agency to educate school superintendents about boiler safety and certification requirements. We also enlist the assistance of city fire marshals to shut down unsafe boilers and city building inspectors to report newly installed boilers.

The program has interagency agreements with the State Fire Marshal's Office and the Texas Department of Health for reporting unregistered or unsafe boilers. We also have contact with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Public Utilities Commission, the Texas Railroad Commission, the Board of Plumbing Examiners, the State Board of Insurance, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

1. How is the Boiler Safety program funded?

Fees and administrative penalties provide the total funding for this program. There are no federal grants or pass-through monies. All revenue is deposited to and expenditures paid from the general revenue fund.

TDLR's enabling statute requires the Commission to set fees in amounts reasonable and necessary to cover the costs of administering the program. Current resources provide adequate funding for the program.


Boiler FAQs


Authorized Inspection Agencies (AIAs)

1. What is an Authorized Inspection Agency (AIA)?

AIAs provide comprehensive insurance coverage for boiler equipment. Inspectors in Texas must be “Commissioned” to conduct inspections of boiler equipment and are required to be employed by an AIA to perform an inspection.

2. Do AIAs (Authorized Inspection Agency) need to register with TDLR?

Yes.

3. What are the requirements to register as an AIA?

A registration form (Form 003BLR) (link: https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/boilers/blr003.pdf) must be submitted with a copy of their NB-360 and/or NB-369, as applicable. There are no fees to register as an AIA.

4. How long is the AIA registration valid?

The AIA registration is valid for the same period the company’s NB-360 or NB-369 is valid.

5. What is the fee for an AIA registration?

There is no fee for an AIA registration.


Boilers/Boiler Operators

1. Who is the “Boiler Owner” or “Boiler Operator”?

The boiler owner or operator is the business, entity, “person or persons” that owns the boiler or is operating the boiler at the owner’s direction. “Person(s)” is inclusive of an individual, corporation, partnership, association or other legal entity.

Tenants are not typically the owner of a boiler.

2. Does a boiler owner/operator need a license?

No. Texas Boiler Law does not require boiler operators to hold a license. However, you should contact your local city offices to see if they require an owner/operator to have an operator license.

In addition, a “competent attendant” (an individual who has been trained to properly operate, start up, shut down, respond to emergencies and maintain control of the boiler in a safe operating condition) must be accessible.

3. What are my responsibilities as the boiler owner/operator?

The Owner/Operator must, but is not limited to:

  • Ensure equipment is inspected per the required interval;
  • Pay all fees associated with operating the boiler, including past due fees by previous owners;
  • Update TDLR records of address changes and change of ownership;
  • Ensuring a current Certificate of Operation is posted on or near the boiler; and,
  • Pay administrative penalties and sanctions (if applicable) in the event enforcement action has been pursued.

4. How do I find information about, or the status of, specific boilers?

You may visit our website at https://tdlr.joportal.com/.

  • Click Location
  • Click Search Locations
  • Use one or multiple fields to search for boilers

For access to copies of invoices and certificates, you must register as a user and be logged in.

5. Where can I find my boiler number on the boiler?

The TX boiler number should be affixed to the boiler by a red sticker, or metal stamp, located next to the original metal ASME name plate.

6. How do I know if my boiler has ever been inspected?

If a red sticker or metal stamp is affixed to your boiler, beginning with “TX” followed by 6 digits, then your boiler has been inspected at least once.

You can find specific boiler information on our website at https://tdlr.joportal.com/.  

7. My boiler has never been inspected.

If you do not find the 6-digit TX number on your boiler, you should contact the TDLR Boiler program immediately at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or 512-539-5716.

8. Is a competent attendant required to be stationed at my boiler 24/7?

No. However, a competent attendant is required to operate and maintain the boiler in accordance with the boiler manufacturer’s recommended guidelines.

9. My boiler is no longer installed or actively being used.

If your boiler has been disconnected but is in place, has been removed, is temporarily “out of service” (for example: for repairs, etc), or is no longer operational, contact your Authorized Inspection Agency. If unknown, send an email to boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or call 512-539-5716.

10. I want to install a boiler.

You must submit a Boiler Installation Report (Form 013BLR) to TDLR for each boiler. A $25 invoice will be generated, for each boiler, upon receipt and entry of the completed form(s). Forms are processed within 3 business days of receipt.

If a boiler must be turned on/operating prior to an inspection, you must submit an application for a Temporary Boiler Operating Permit (Form 015BLR) for authorization to operate your boiler(s) for 30 days from the date of approval. A $50 invoice will be generated for each form, upon receipt and entry of the completed form(s). Forms are processed within 3 business days of receipt.

11. Where do I send the boiler installation report?

Submit completed forms to:

1) to boilers@tdlr.texas.gov;

2) via fax to 512-539-5687; or,

3) to TDLR, ATTN: Boiler Program, PO Box 12157, Austin, TX 78711.


Certificates of Operation

1. I have not received my Certificate of Operation.

Please check the following before contacting the Boiler Safety Program:

  1. Have all fees been paid for the Certificate of Operation? 

    NO: Your certificate will not be printed until all fees have been paid - Boiler invoices can be paid online at https://tdlr.joportal.com/; - See question “b. Was there a violation cited during the inspection?”

    YES:
     See question b. Was there a violation cited during the inspection?”

  2. Was there a violation cited during the inspection?

    NO: If fees are not owed and there is no violation cited, email us at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or at 512-539-5716 for further assistance

    YES: Have you contacted your inspector to come to your site to verify the correction?

    • YES: Email us at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or at 512-539-5716 for further assistance

    • NO: Contact your inspector to verify the correction has been made. The inspector will update the department records.


2. How can I find out the status of my boiler certificate of operation?
 

Visit our website at https://tdlr.joportal.com/. See #4 in Boilers/Boiler Operators above.

If you cannot access your certificate, email us at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or contact the department at 512-539-5716.

3. Can I get a duplicate certificate of operation or invoice?

A duplicate certificate of operation and invoices can be printed at no cost by visiting our website at https://tdlr.joportal.com/. See #4 in Boilers/Boiler Operators above. If you would like a printed copy on TDLR paper, you must submit your request in writing and pay a $25 fee.


Fees/Invoices

1. How much are the certificate of operation and inspection fees?

The certificate of operation fee is $70 per boiler for and is applied to all boilers. Inspection fees are assessed when a TDLR Boiler inspector conducts the inspection. The fees are:

  • $70 for a heating boiler with an inspection opening
  • $40 for a heating boiler without an inspection opening
  • $70 for all non-heating boilers

2. Why was I charged a late fee?

Late fees are assessed when a boiler is inspected after the expiration date of the most recent certificate of operation.

3. Can I dispute boiler late fees?

Late fees may be disputed if your boiler was inspected PRIOR to the expiration date of the most recent certificate of operation. If your boiler was inspected AFTER the expiration date of the most recent certificate of operation, the late fees cannot be waived.

4. Why am I being charged a Boiler Installation Report fee?

The fee is assessed for the cost to process paperwork associated with receipt of the Boiler Installation Report.

5. Why am I being charged an Extension fee?

The fee is assessed for the cost to process paperwork associated with receipt of the Extension Request.

6. Why am I being charged a Certificate of Variance fee?

The fee is assessed for the cost to process paperwork associated with receipt of the Certificate of Variance.

7. What is the fee for my joint review?

The Joint Review fee is $1,700.

8. What is the fee for deeming my boiler to be a Texas Special?

The Special Inspection fee is $1,700.

9. Do I have to pay the invoice if my boiler was removed from active status after the inspection?

Yes, the invoice is valid if the boiler was still in service at that the time of the inspection.

10. Am I responsible for the previous owner’s unpaid fees/fines and charges?

Yes, see Texas Boiler Rule §65.300(a).

11. Can I pay my boiler invoice fee(s) online?

Boiler invoices can be paid online at https://tdlr.joportal.com/.

12. The owner/contact information on my invoice is incorrect.

Email us at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or contact the department at 512-539-5716 and request an updated copy of your invoice.

13. How do I get a copy of my invoice?

Visit our website at https://tdlr.joportal.com/. See #4 in Boilers/Boiler Operators above.

14. The charges on my invoice are incorrect, how do I get them corrected?

Email us at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or contact the department at 512-539-5716.


Inspections

1. How can I get my newly installed boiler inspected?

You must submit a Boiler Installation Report (Form 013BLR) to TDLR for each boiler. A $25 invoice will be generated, for each boiler, upon receipt and entry of the completed form(s). Forms are processed within 3 business days of receipt.

If a boiler must be turned on/used prior to an inspection, you must submit an application for a Temporary Boiler Operating Permit (Form 015BLR) for authorization to operate your boiler(s) for 30 days from the date of approval. A $50 invoice will be generated for each form, upon receipt and entry of the completed form(s). Forms are processed within 3 business days of receipt.

2. Does my boiler have to be inspected before I can turn it on/operate it/use it?

Yes, unless an application for a Temporary Operating Permit (Form 015BLR) has been submitted and approved. This application authorizes boiler(s) to operate for 30 days from date of approval. Submittal of the application does not guarantee approval; the form is reviewed to ensure all applicable safety appurtenances for the boiler are addressed.

A $50 invoice will be generated for each form, upon receipt and entry of the completed form(s). Forms are processed within 3 business days of receipt.

3. My boiler is coming due for inspection. How do I get it inspected?

Contact your Authorized Inspection Agency “AIA” or your state boiler inspector. It is recommended to contact your inspector at least one month prior to the expiration of your boiler Certificate of Operation.

Agency Name TDLR Registration # Contact #
ABS Group, Inc. 0104 (281) 673-2972
Arise Incorporated 0105 (440) 746-8908
Arise Incorporated 0105 (732) 221-3461
Chubb & Son Insurance Cos 0009 (214) 754-8243
Cincinnati Insurance Company 0109 (512) 318-1367
CNA Risk Control Manager 0016 (405) 917-6502
DAMARC Quality inspection Services 0120 (866) 361-4321
Factory Mutual Insurance Co 0110 (972) 731-2706
Hartford Steam Boiler 0002 (800) 333-4677
Insparisk, LLC – 0121 0121 (888) 464-6772
Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. 0122 (740) 513-7126
National Union Fire Ins. Co. – 0111 0111 (318) 865-5126
OneCIS Insurance Co. 0118 (847) 726-3735
Starr Technical Risks Agency, Inc 0119 (804) 598-1100
Travelers Insurance Co. 0006 (800) 425-4119
XL Insurance Company 0123 (770) 614-3111
Zurich American Insurance Co. 0015 (817) 403-4601

 

If unknown, send an email to boilers@tdlr.texas.gov or call 512-539-5716.

4. How long will it take for the inspector to do a boiler inspection?

It can range from 30 minutes to eight hours and longer, depending upon the boiler.

5. How often is my boiler inspected?

Certificate inspections occur either every 12 months, every 24 months, or every 36 months, depending on the boiler type. Certificate inspections (internal or external) are the only inspections with associated fees. Non-certificate inspections (internal or external) may occur more frequently.

6. How do I know if I need an internal or external inspection for my Certificate Inspection?

Your boiler inspector will notify you of the type of inspection needed when contact is made.

7. Do I need to have my boiler re-inspected if violations are found?

No. However a boiler inspector must verify that the noted violations have been corrected and is required to notify TDLR of the correction or update the inspection database.

8. If I have coverage with an AIA, can the state inspect my boiler?

No. However, if the boiler goes over 90-days past due, TDLR may assign an alternate inspector who may charge additional fees up to $260 for the inspection.


Joint Reviews

1. When/How do I get scheduled for my joint review?

You must coordinate with your AIA to get the Request for Scheduling submitted, but there are many requirements to be met prior to being scheduled  It is recommended to visit our site at https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/boilers/blrjointreviews.htm for information regarding this process.


Miscellaneous

1. I am the new owner. Do I need to do anything?

Submit a change of ownership notice in writing via:

  • Mail to TDLR, ATTN: Boiler Program, PO Box 12157, Austin, TX 78711;
  • Fax to 512-539-5687; or,
  • Email at boilers@tdlr.texas.gov

2. Is a boiler law & rules book available for purchase?

No. The laws and rules are available for download from the boiler safety page at https://www.license.state.tx.us/boilers/blr.htm.

3. How do I receive recent updates on the boiler program?

Register online at https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/TXDLR/subscriber/new. You may also follow TLDR on Facebook and via Twitter; Boiler Program updates are provided via these social media sites as well, and further information regarding options is available at https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/media-inquiries.htm#social.

4. Can I attend the Boiler Board meetings?

Yes. Unless otherwise stated, all Board of Boiler Rules meetings are open to the public and streamed online via our YouTube channel at https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/boilers/blrboard.htm#meetings.

5. Where can I obtain the current version of any TDLR Boiler form?

Boiler forms are accessible on the TDLR website at https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/boilers/blrforms.htm.

6. My license expired while I was on active duty as a military service member. Do I have any additional time to complete continuing education and other requirements related to the renewal of my license?

Yes. You are exempt from paying any late renewal fee and are only required to pay the timely renewal fee. You must complete any required continuing education within 2 years after discharge from your last period of active duty service.

You must complete the following requirements:

  • Download and complete the Military Renewal Form
  • Pay the regular renewal fee
  • Submit a copy of your DD-214 (if you are no longer on active duty); or,

A copy of your active duty orders or your Permanent Change of Station Order (if you are actively serving)


Texas Commissions (Licensed Boiler Inspectors)

1. Who can obtain a license (Texas Commission) to inspect boilers?

An inspector must be employed with TDLR or with a registered Authorized Inspection Agency; and, download, complete and submit the Texas Commission Application (Form BLR 008) to the Department, and pay the $50 Application Fee.

2. Does Texas reciprocate with other states for a TX commission?

Texas does not reciprocate with other states.

3. Do I have to take the test to receive a TX commission (ASME)?

No, you are only required to possess the National Board Authorized Inspector Commission with ASME.

4. Do I have to take the test to receive a Texas Commission (in-service)?

Yes, if you have never taken the Texas In-Service Commission exam. Please visit www.psionline.com for more information.

5. What if I terminate employment or change my inspection agency?

Commissioned inspectors must notify TDLR in writing within two (2) business days of the termination of employment and must return the commission card to TDLR within 30 days.

For employment changes, an Employer Change Application (Form BLR004) must be downloaded, completed and submitted to the Department, with a $25 Application Fee.

6. How do I get decals for inspections?

Inspectors Commissioned in Texas must submit a request in writing, via USPS mail or email to boilers@tdlr.texas.gov. The request must include the mailing address (not a PO Box) of the inspector. Only commissioned inspectors may request decals.


Variances

1. How do I receive a variance of a boiler rule?

You must download, complete and submit a Variance Request Form (Form 010BLR) at https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/boilers/blr010.pdf and pay the associated fee. Submittal of a request does not guarantee approval. You will receive an invoice upon receipt and entry of the completed form. Forms are processed within 3 business days from the date of receipt.

2. How long is a variance valid?

For as long as the boiler remains in service at the location where the variance was granted unless an expiration date is set for the variance.