Martensitic high Cr (10 - 16%) steels alloyed with Ni (Co), Mo, W, V, and N are widely used in constructions subjected to cyclic loads at temperatures up to 600 degrees Celsius, in general after quenching from 1100 - 1150 degrees Celsius followed by tempering at 650 - 690 degrees Celsius. Due to long term service exposure at high temperatures, different microstructural changes take place, such as second-phases precipitation, formation of low-angle grain boundaries, as well as internal damage caused by cyclic loads and creep. Specific phase diagrams are presented that can be used to define time periods for reliable operation of parts with given composition, based on the time required for the appearance of second phase particles known to be detrimental to mechanical strength and performance. Restoring thermal treatments to be applied after long time exposure at service conditions, aiming at increasing service life, are also presented and discussed. The combined use of the diagrams and the restoring treatment ensures prediction of a reliable service-life period for components made of these steels.