Boilers are essential pillars of many industrial operations. Boilers are crucial in our modern world in various industrial processes, heating applications, and power generation. However, not all boilers are created equal. This comprehensive blog will delve into the world of boilers, focusing on the distinctions between IBR (Indian Boiler Regulation), Non-IBR, and SIB (Small Industrial Boiler) boilers.

Understanding Boilers

A boiler is a closed vessel design to hold and heat water to produce steam. The steam generated is then utilized for many applications, including power generation, heating, and industrial processes. Boilers come in various types, shapes, and sizes, each tailored to specific needs.

Types of Boilers:

  1. Non-IBR Boilers

Non-IBR boilers are boilers not covered under Indian Boiler Regulation. Any boiler not covered under IBR, i.e., a steam-producing vessel whose volumetric capacity is less than 25 litres or pressure is less than 1 kg/cm2, is Non-IBR.




Non-IBR boilers provide flexibility in design and construction, making them suitable for various applications. These boilers are widely used in smaller industrial setups and commercial spaces where stringent adherence to IBR standards might be optional. Non-IBR boilers are known for their ease of installation, cost-effectiveness, and adaptability to different operational requirements. It offers cost savings regarding initial investments, maintenance and complaint requirements.

They have a capacity of Up to 700 kg/h in the case of biomass and 850 kg/h in the case of diesel/gas. On the other hand, the disadvantages of the boilers are that they are limited to coil-type design, demand meticulous water quality maintenance, and have comparatively lower efficiency.

2. SIB Boilers:

SIB boilers have a water holding capacity between 25 and 500 liters and operating pressure below 7 kg/cm2. Small Industrial Boilers (SIB) cater to the demand for compact, portable steam-generating units. These boilers are design for small-scale industries and applications. Despite their compact size, SIB boilers deliver impressive efficiency and reliability and require a specialized certified operator.

The disadvantage of the SIB Boilers is that it requires IBR approval. While requiring IBR approval, they boast superior heat transfer, fuel flexibility, and a compact design. They are ideal for low steam demands. SIB boilers have a capacity of up to 500 kg/h (biomass) and 600 kg/h (diesel/gas).

3. IBR Boilers:

IBR boiler means a closed vessel exceeding 25 Liters in capacity. IBR, or Indian Boiler Regulation, sets the standards for developing, constructing, and inspecting boilers in India. IBR boilers conform to these regulations, ensuring high safety and efficiency standards. Key benefits of IBR boilers include:

  • Maximum fuel flexibility.
  • Optimal efficiency.
  • Extensive heat transfer area.
  • Adaptability in terms of capacity and pressure.

Industries dealing with IBR boilers must obtain approval from the Indian government’s regulatory bodies, showcasing their commitment to maintaining high safety levels.

The disadvantage of the IBR Boiler is that it mandates IBR certification, demands a certified operator, and requires IBR piping. The capacity of the IBR boiler is virtually limitless.


A. Selecting the right boiler for your industrial or commercial operation is a critical decision that hinges on several key factors:

  1. Pressure Requirement: The pressure requirement of your operation is crucial in determining the type and specifications of the boiler you need. IBR boilers are suitable for industries that require high pressure for power generation or process heating. On the other hand, SIB and non-IBR boilers are low-pressure boilers and are more common in applications like heating and smaller-scale industrial processes.
  2. Steam Load: Assess the quantity of steam required for seamless operations. Steam load refers to the steam your operation needs to maintain seamless and efficient processes. It’s essential to choose a boiler with an adequate capacity to handle the peak steam demand, preventing issues like insufficient steam supply during periods of high demand. If the steam load is below 800 kg/hr, IBR, SIB, and IBR boilers can be used, whereas only IBR boilers can be used if the steam load is higher.
  3. Fuel Availability: Different boilers can be design to run on various fuels, including natural gas, diesel, coal, biomass, or even a combination of fuels. When deciding on the fuel type, it’s crucial to consider its availability, cost, and environmental impact. Non-IBR boilers can only run on diesel, gas, FO, biomass pellets & Astillas. In contrast, SIB & IBR boilers are design to handle a greater variety of biomass fuels such as briquettes, wood, wood chips, rice husk, mustard straw, paddy husk, etc. So, consider the fuel availability and the operational costs to run the boilers efficiently.


In boilers, the decision-making process is a delicate balance between requirements, efficiency, and costs. Non-IBR, SIB, and IBR boilers each bring something unique to the table. By understanding their nuances and aligning them with your operational needs, you can unlock the potential for a seamless and efficient industrial process.

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