Increasing the efficiency of any machine or machine component can be a bit like found money for businesses. A well performing machine component is less likely to break down over its lifetime saving companies money and as they say ‘a penny saved is a penny earned.’ However, when it comes to optimizing machine or machine component performance there is one difference that and finding money –maximizing machine component efficiency does not occur by accident. It takes an effort and conscientious use of the equipment in question. These details can help you effectively improve the efficiency of your cartridge heater.
- Protect the main heating element: The entire heating element of the cartridge heater should be immersed in the heating medium. This will prevent the heating element from exceeding the heat rating for the device. Moreover, make sure that the lead wire protrudes from the heater. This part could otherwise be overheated and damaged which can lead to costly repair or the need for a replacement.
- Be careful when selecting the right heater: Selecting the correct wattage is of utmost importance when selecting a cartridge heater. The results of making the right selection in this regard will prevent failure and increase the performance of your cartridge. You can use factors like the medium to be heated, the desired operating temperature and process variables such as flow rate to determine the watt density of your heater cartridge. Next, its wattage should match closely with the application’s actual load requirements to limit it from cycling too often. We can help with our selection of customer cartridge heaters. We realize that every business is different and that every business owner has different needs, production goals, etc.
- Prevent excessive heater cycling: A Watlow cartridge heater is among the most reliable kind of heater on the market but it is not invincible. Avoid excessive temperature cycling to guarantee the reliability and longevity of this machine workhorse. Excessive heater cycling causes severe stress and oxidation of the resistance wires inside a heater. Solid state relays (SSRs) and SCR power controllers can be used to minimize heater element recycling. (A solid state relay is electronic switching device that switches on or off when a small external voltage is applied across its control terminals.)
- Regularly clean the surface: Dirt, grease and grime should not be allowed to accumulate on your heater. This will reduce heat transfer performance and cause the unit to become damaged.
Different machines and different businesses have different thermal demands. Moreover, optimizing your machine components performance should never be an afterthought. Choose one of our heaters and be assured that their manufacturers have behind them a wealth of industry knowledge.
One of the key ways to lower equipment costs for any business it to make sure that each piece of equipment last as long as possible. And when it comes to heating equipment this can be quite a challenge. Logic would suggest that equipment such as cartridge heaters would naturally have a short life due to their very nature. However, cartridge failure is not always due to age. There are other factors that can lead to their failure. Here we outline some of the most common reasons why this happens and offer our top tips on how to prevent cartridge heater failure in the future.
- Improper fit: Perhaps the most common cause for cartridge heater failure of all is improper fit. If a heater cannot dissipate the heat to the outside of its sheath properly the temperature will rise until it ultimately fails. Eventually, this will cause a breakdown of wires and heater itself.
- The watt density is too high: All cartridge heaters have a voltage at which they are designed to work. Outside of this voltage rating they may be ineffective or may fail eventually. So, if the applied voltage is too high then this will increase the watt density of the heating element. This will result in heat not being dissipated in the way that it should. The result can be that the unit fails to operate.
- Frequent temperature cycling: Excessive temperature cycling places undue stress on cartridge heaters. This can cause them to expand and contract at a fast rate (i.e. every 30-60 seconds). Eventually, this will reduce the lifespan of your heating element.
- Moisture and impurities: These elements can be drawn into your heating cartridge from the surrounding environment. These two elements can often cause a short circuit to occur which can lead to the heater failing.
- High temperatures and excess movement: Cartridge heaters can also be damaged by two other external factors – high temperatures and excess movement. To give your heater an added level of protection, make sure that you supply it with a suitable level of insulation when it is mounted onto moving machinery. In other words, the heating element should be as stable as possible or at the very least protected from excess movement which can lead to an eventual breakdown.
The takeaway from all this is that just because your cartridge heater has a difficult job to perform does not mean that it has to burn out quickly. When certain precautions are taken your Watlow cartridge heater can have a life that is as long as any other vital equipment you own. Moreover, our customer cartridge heaters are made to fit the needs of all kinds of businesses. Check out our models and the specs and you will see how they can be an asset to your company.
Whether most people know it or not, there are two kinds of heaters that can be purchased buy for either home or business use. There are also differences between the two kinds of space heaters. The kinds of heaters are radiant and convection heaters. They are both effective at warming spaces but they work in completely different ways. Here is a breakdown of the two kinds of heaters, how each functions and a look at the question of which is more effective.
Radiant heating works by creating infrared radiation. Further, the warmth from radiant heaters travels out in electromagnetic ways that are then absorbed by the objects that they run into. Campfires and fireplace are two examples of radiant heat. Finally, radiant heat is – unlike convection heating – directional and remains unaffected by the medium through which it travels. This kind of heating is growing in popularity throughout the market.
One the other hand, convection heaters heat the air that circulates through a target area. Convection currents are drawn into and through the heating element – usually by a fan – and this in turn heats up the entire room by raising its temperature. In other words, it is not directional in that it heats spaces indirectly. The kinds of convection heat are oil, ceramic, water, fan heaters, and furnaces.
As we said, both can heat spaces quite effectively. Convection heaters warm spaces slower than do radiant heaters but they provide heat over a longer period of time and over larger areas. Radiant heaters heat up spaces too but usually warm smaller areas as compared to convection heaters. As it so happens, some people use a combination of the two in order to get the best features of each technology.
So, which one you use depends on your business needs. We can provide you with powerful and efficient radiant heaters as well as a Watlow cartridge heater and our coil heaters. We also sell temperature sensors & accessories to meet your commercial requirements. Our manufacturers are the top names in the business including Watlow, Osram Slyvania, Chromalox, Next Thermal and others.
One of the manufacturers we are proudest to be associated with is Watlow Electric Manufacturing Co. We sell their high quality products to the industrial sector with pride and confidence that clients will receive machine and machine parts that will perform at or above their expectations. We admire the company for their constant efforts at perfection in the products they produce. But innovation and excellence such as that achieved by Watlow Electric Manufacturing Company does not happen overnight nor is their story a simple one. Here is a little about one of our manufacturers that we hope will inspire your company as you peruse our products such as our hot air heater and oil tank heater blanket.
Watlow is a family owned business that began back in 1922 when its founder rented a space on the second floor of a machine shop and began making electric heating elements for the shoe company. The St. Louis businessman/inventor – Louis Desloge Sr. – eventually began selling his products locally then expanded beyond the local market during the 1930s and 1940s. HIs first innovation came with the swaged cartridge heater which improved heat transfer efficiency greatly. This innovation and his company’s hard work formed the basis of him expanding to a 185,000 square foot facility eventually.
Whereas some companies rest for some time on one accomplishment, innovations continued throughout the next several decades for the Watlow Company. For example, it introduced the first thermocouple product back in the 1970s. Thermocouples have the ability to accurately measure extreme temperatures, with ranges from 270 to 2,500 degrees Celsius, and errors within 0.5 to 2 degrees Celsius and are used in gas appliances such as boilers, water heaters, and ovens.
Today and Tomorrow
Today, the company continues to innovate with products such as its new F4T with INTUITION, a touch-screen controller that combines the functions of several devices into one process control. It also continues to provide products to numerous industries, including semiconductor processing, environmental chambers, energy processes, diesel emissions, medical and foodservice equipment. Moreover,, Watlow holds more than 450 patents and currently employees more than 2,000 employees who work in many parts of the world.
Finally, we know that your company will be well served by any of the Watlow products we sell on our site as your company makes its own push towards excellence and innovation.
The Watlow cartridge heater, hot air heater, ceramic heater and other machine components that we sell help with the smooth operation of a number of machines across a wide variety of industries. But when equipment is mishandled, accidents and even deaths can occur. Listed below are 4 general workplace safety tips to always keep in mind for ensuring machine safety in the workplace and for ensuring that our heaters help you meet your industrial goals.
- Never have your people operate machinery for which they have not been trained: Be sure that anyone who handles the machinery in question has received some sort of training or tutorial. This will help ensure that the machine is more productive and that the person operating it is safe from serious injury or even death. Some of the machines that hold our heaters can cause great damage including burns to operators and even people who happen to be nearby.
- Never distract persons who are operating industrial machinery: Operating certain kinds of machines for which our heaters are integrated requires great focus. If that focus is broken the result can result in injury or a fatality. Moreover, you will want to be sure as the operator to stay away from certain moving parts that may capture clothing or limbs or that may cause burns to occur.
- Constantly have faulty or failing equipment serviced: A machine that is not performing up to specs can not only cause your company to be less productive, it can also pose danger to employees resulting in regulatory penalties, lawsuits and time off.
- Have your employees wear the proper equipment: If goggles are required make sure that employees wear them. If other equipment is needed to safely operate certain machinery make sure that all operators know to wear this equipment at all times while operating machines.
Finally, no one wants an industrial accident to occur. Our heaters are designed to create intense heat. It is therefore important that you take extraordinary caution with operating the machines and servicing the heaters that are installed in those machines.
In all the industries that we serve it is critical that owners be able to keep their equipment at a specific temperature. Unfortunately, that responsibility becomes difficult to fulfill when cold weather sets in. Our coil heaters, band heaters, ring heater, hot air heater etc are products that can help businesses stay productive and avoid the loss of time and money. If you use cartridge heaters, for example, in any of the following applications you can relate to this problem in particular:
- Immersion tank heating
- HVAC compressors
- Fuel cells
- Medical devices
- Sensor measurement devices
- Die casting
- Hot melt adhesives
But what do you do for equipment that has failed because your current heating product has stopped working due to cold weather, etc? Here are our suggestions for business owners.
Troubleshoot the equipment: The first step is to properly diagnose the problem. This is should be done with the goal of getting the machine up and running as soon as possible so as not to slow down productivity. Often, if a particular malfunction has occurred often and has been diagnosed in the past, then the whole troubleshooting process can be shortened considerably. Trouble shooting should involve:
- Verifying that a problem exist
- Narrowing down the cause(s)
- Correcting the problem
- Work to prevent future issues
On the last point, we can help you by supplying you with products that will help your equipment run smoothly.
Implement a contingency plan: It is wise at some point to have a contingency plan in place if a major piece of equipment does break down. This way, your business will be able to save product, by switching to the temporary solution. Hopefully, your business will have planned for a contingency such as equipment breakdown.
Finally, many problems that involve heat product related breakdown are caused by owners failing to purchase and maintain the proper equipment. On our site, we will help you choose the right equipment for your industry and for the machine (s) you need to keep up and running.