How to Select the Right Industrial Heating Element

Industrial heating elements are among the most crucial components in any industrial heating system. Selecting the right industrial heating element can save money, and time, and create a more efficient process, regardless of the application.

Some plant engineers overlook the importance of an industrial heating element’s role in manufacturing, so we put together this guide to demonstrate how to select the right heating element. Please don’t hesitate to contact our expert staff to address any questions you may have.

Selecting the Ideal Heating Element

Circulation Heater angled

Selecting the right industrial heater element starts with collecting the right information, and that begins with asking the right questions. These questions should concentrate on how to heat up the solid, liquid, or gas in question in your industrial process, and what the specifications of the heating element must be to achieve the best heating performance.


These key questions include:

– What alloy should be used?

– What temperature does the heating element need to reach?

– What sort of control is required?

– What is the required voltage?

– How long will the intervals be during which the heating element needs to be active?

Having precise answers to the questions above is critical to selecting the appropriate heating element. It’s helpful to have the answers organized before reaching out to a company to procure a heating element or industrial heater because it expedites the process.

The most common question clients ask is how much power is required to heat up a tank of fluid to reach the desired temperature. The answer must be calculated based on factors including location (indoors or outdoors), the flow rate, the type of liquid being heated, and the ambient temperature

The Benefits of Choosing the Right Industrial Heater Elements

Selecting an ideal heating element for an industrial heater has a tremendous impact on the quality of the product of the process the heater is used in, the cost of creating the product, and, most importantly, the safety of the operation.

Not having the right heating element can lead to serious safety risks. Installing the right heating element in an industrial process heater yields the following benefits:

  1. Reduced Operational Costs

Even if the heating element which is ideal for your industrial heater is more expensive than an alternative element, costs over time will be lower, saving money over the operational life of the heater.

  1. Improved Operational Efficiency

Selecting the right heating element will improve the efficiency of industrial processes. Energy consumption goes down when the element is constructed of the correct material and set up to conduct heat optimally for the medium being heated.

  1. Heightened Safety

Choosing the appropriate heating element alleviates the potential for malfunction which can lead to serious safety consequences. Industrial-process downtime is the of the lowest concern when the consequences of having incorrect equipment can be as serious as an explosion.

  1. Higher Return on Investment

Optimal operational efficiency mean the return on investment of each dollar allocated to an industrial process sees a higher return. You see higher profit margins, lower waste, and more efficient business with the right equipment.

  1. Improved Longevity of Operational Life

When all components of an industrial heating system are ideally compatible, the system works optimally. It doesn’t degrade as quickly as a system without ideal components. Similarly, when an industrial heating system is running at peak efficiency, the entire process runs smoothly, extending the entire system’s lifecycle as each cycle degrades the equipment less.

One of the most significant ways to improve operational efficiency in industrial heating is often overlooked: The simple difference between construction materials. The difference between a steel element and stainless steel element, for example. A steel heating element is more efficient for transferring heat between mediums than a stainless steel element. This small difference translates into significant cost savings and a longer operational life for the equipment.

More information about improving operational energy efficiency is available from the Department of Energy.

Even when the appropriate heating element is selected, a suitable temperature control panel is required to use the equipment effectively. Aside from having the right industrial heating element, using an appropriate temperature control panel has the greatest impact on operational efficiency.

The Costs of Choosing The Wrong Industrial Heater Elements

The cost associated with using the wrong industrial heating element for heating applications can be represented in terms of labour costs, material replacement cost, and, most importantly, the potential health and safety costs.

In one example mentioned to Wattco, a maintenance worker was tasked with replacing a heating element in an oil-heating system. The maintenance worker was unaware that an oil-heating element of specific parameters was the only suitable replacement part, thinking he could use a water-heating element for the oil-heating application instead.

Thankfully there was no disastrous consequence in this particular example. However, the maintenance worker learned the hard way that a heating element for water cannot be used in oil-heating equipment because each liquid has a different viscosity and therefore requires specific equipment.

The incident described here had serious costs and impacts, as the entire process was compromised because one part was incompatible. The heating element failed under the stress of working in an application it was not suited for, causing all of the liquid to be contaminated. The mishap incurred high costs because of process downtime, the cost of parts for replacing the original oil element and the water element, which was also destroyed, and the cost of the additional labour which needed to be employed.

The whole situation would have been avoided if the appropriate heating element had been used.

Ordering Industrial Heater Elements from Wattco

Begin the procurement process for acquiring a Wattco industrial heating element by filling out our quote request form or phoning our office toll-free at 1-866-604-3775. You’ll receive a quote back within 24 hours.


We build trusted relationships with our clients, and below are just a few reasons companies choose Wattco as their preferred supplier of industrial heating equipment.

– Our heating elements can be compatible with practically any existing industrial heating infrastructure. Simply tell us your specifications, and we can supply the product or build it custom if it isn’t standard.

– We are a “one-stop-shop” for all industrial heating needs for any industry. We offer and service not only industrial heater elements but also offer fully-customized heaters and replacement parts. Working with one centralized supplier makes the procurement process fast, easy, and straightforward.

– Wattco has been supplying heating products to companies worldwide since 1969. We’ve built strong, lasting relationships with clients in industries ranging from nuclear to chemical manufacturing over decades in the business.

– We recognize that when something goes wrong and interrupts your industrial process every second counts, so we keep a “Priority One,” team standing by to handle emergencies and critical situations.

Custom Heating Elements

Order custom heating elements or custom industrial heating equipment for your niche or non-standard application through Wattco. Whether you are procuring equipment for a new project or looking for a new supplier, contact us to discuss your project.

Fill out our quote form and we’ll get back to you with the requested information in 24-hours or less.