Superior Boiler manufactures commercial & industrial boiler systems for a variety of applications, including sterilization. Our products are custom engineered to fit any footprint. Facilities managers, mechanical contractors, building owners, engineers and more count on us for steam boilers for sterilization.

Industrial and Commercial Sterilization

Boilers produce steam that is used to heat the building and heat water for laundry, cooking and cleaning. This steam can also be used to sterilize medical and dental equipment, food and beverage containers, foods and drinks.

In a hospital, for example, at least one boiler runs non-stop to meet the load demand. Typically, two or more run the majority of the time or there is at least one boiler on standby for redundancy. Steam is then transported throughout the hospital via a system of pipes, where it can be used for heating the building or supplying an autoclave. In most cases, only about 5% of the steam generated by a hospital boiler or steam plant is used for sterilizing equipment. Heating and hot water make up the bulk of the boiler’s demand.

An autoclave sterilizer uses steam on-demand to kill germs and bacteria on surgical tools, lab equipment, food and beverage containers and more. Steam is a much more efficient way to reach the high temperatures required to kill these microbes than hot air. The steam quality is important – the boiler needs to produce steam at a specific temperature and pressure to effectively sterilize equipment. And, the steam has to be clean, without any additives or chemicals.

Commercial Steam Sources

House steam – Steam provided by the boiler(s) that produce hot water and steam for the rest of the facility, such as for building heat, laundry and cooking. This is usually the most convenient option for sterilization steam, as long as the water is clean.

Steam-to-steam generator – If clean steam can’t be produced by the house boiler, this system can be a good solution. A steam-to-steam generator takes steam from house boiler and uses it to heat water and turn it into clean steam, which is then supplied to the autoclave. It can be expensive, but it’s an efficient solution if the house steam’s quality is questionable.

Electric steam generator – Either a remote boiler or an integral boiler that uses electric heating elements to heat water and produce steam is called and electric steam generator. The steam is then fed directly into the autoclave sterilizer. An integral boiler is usually small and made of stainless steel. They’re typically designed to fit under the autoclave and limited to 45 kilowatts of power. A remote boiler is bigger and more powerful, which means it can supply more steam, but it has to be located either next to the autoclave or possibly even in a nearby room.

Industries and Applications

Heat treatment stops bacteria, germs and enzymes from growing. It can be used during food and beverage production to sterilize food and beverage containers and to treat food products such as milk, beer, juice and others.

Hospitals, dental labs and other medical facilities use steam to sterilize medical instruments and tools for operating rooms, labs and more.


In a building that uses a boiler for heat, using steam from the same system for sterilization is a convenient and economical choice. An older boiler that struggles to even heat a building will usually have difficulty producing enough steam for sterilization. Superior Boiler can manufacture a custom solution that fits any footprint and application. Contact your local sales rep to discuss your commercial sterilization needs.

Contact your local Superior Boiler sales rep to discuss how we can meet your facility’s sterilization needs.

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Nurse Sterilizing Dental Equipment in Autoclave

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