Signs That It’s Time To Replace Your Immersion Heater

Electric Immersion HeaterA Quick Refresher on When to Replace an Industrial Heater

Electric immersion heaters are designed for long-lasting performance. But there comes a point in every heater’s lifespan where it needs to be replaced. We take a look at the signs and symptoms that indicate it’s time to replace your immersion heater.

Signs & Symptoms

Once a heater gets too old, it will inevitably begin to lose its efficiency and reliability. Even if this causes decreased performance rather than complete failure, it still affects the profitability of your process. Maintenance and repair help for a while. But look out for these signs and symptoms.

Element Failures

Elements that are not maintained properly will find discoloration and sedimentation buildup on the sheath of the immersion heater. This will create poor heat transfer and inevitable failure after a longer period of time.

Before replacing, check the heater and the system to make sure it is not simply a build up of sludge or sediment causing the issue. Sometimes cleaning away debris is enough to resolve the problem. If this happens, consider changing the placement of the heater to avoid this problem in the future.


Most heaters have a limited shelf-life. How long yours lasts depends on a number of factors, including:

  • Humidity
  • Environmental consideration such as air quality (for air heaters) or liquid (ie sedimentation)
  • Controls
  • Frequency of Use
  • Maintenance frequency

Consult with the manufacturer to determine how long your heater is expected to last with your process. A custom-manufactured electric heater can last longer since it is built to a specific purpose.

Making the switch to electricity offers many advantages including safer, more efficient heating. As well, making your process more environmentally friendly may even make you eligible for tax breaks.

Applicaation of Tubular Heating ElementsDamage

Although some damage can be repaired/replaced there is a point where it makes more sense to replace the unit. Damaged electric heating elements, for example, are easily and affordably replaced. However, for more substantial or expensive repairs it may make sense to replace the entire heater.

The age of the equipment is worth considering. It’s not always worth doing expensive repairs on equipment you’ll need to replace in a year or two anyway.

Repair or Replace

One of the big considerations when determining whether or not you need a new immersion heater is assessing the costs and benefits. Depending on the situation you can either repair or replace the heater.

If the equipment is repairable weigh your options carefully. Most repairs are less expensive than replacing a unit, so usually it’s the preferable option. However, with severe damage or an old machine, this isn’t always the case.

As well, consider the value. Even if the repair is cheaper, it’s not always worthwhile with an older unit that will need to be replaced soon anyway. As well, determine whether the repair will allow the heater to operate at its regular efficiency.

If the heater can’t continue to perform at peak efficiency it may actually be more expensive over the long run.

Improving Immersion Heater Lifespan

Taking a proactive approach can significantly improve an immersion heater’s lifespan. Choosing the right build is one of the most important factors. For maximum efficiency and long life, heaters need the right wattages and materials for their application.

As well, proper electric heater maintenance prevents damage and ensures efficient operation. Regular cleanings and checking for corrosion and loose connections can avoid costly shutdowns or repairs down the road.

Purchase An Electric Immersion Heater

Wattco custom-manufactures electric immersion heaters. The custom design means each heater is built to your specific application, ensuring longevity and maximum efficiency. Wattco heaters use simple, making repairs easy and infrequent.

Contact us today for a quote or more information on an electric immersion heater.

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