Two of the most common industrial heating methods are convection and infrared heating. The more direct heating of radiant (infrared) is more efficient in a large or targeted area. However, convection heating is more appropriate for enclosed spaces, such as industrial ovens.
Instead of directly heating the target product, convection heaters heat air as it is drawn through a fan. The heated air circulates inside the oven raising the temperature evenly throughout.
While convection heating is ideal for industrial ovens, certain safety precautions are necessary to avoid damage and danger.
The main risks with industrial convection heaters are the high temperatures and voltages. High temperatures, especially in enclosed spaces, like an oven, present multiple risks. Combustion or explosion is possible as both heat and temperature increase, especially if there are flammable vapors and gases inside the oven.
The high voltage output can present electrocution hazards if wiring and enclosures are not properly set up and contained. Any damage or fraying of wires and enclosures may present further risks.
The NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) 86 codes and standards provide a guideline for minimising fire and explosion hazards for ovens and furnaces. These standards include:
The guide helps to outline these needs for each classification of furnace and oven.
Runaway temperatures can cause overheating, which increases pressure and the risk of combustion of any flammable vapor or gases within the industrial oven. Using temperature monitoring and control devices helps to minimize the risk of runaway temperatures, reacting before dangerous temperature thresholds are reached.
Pressure relief devices can help prevent explosions. As the heat increases, so does the pressure. Relief devices let off the pressure and dangerous vapors/gases to create a safer atmosphere inside of the oven.
Using a pressure relief device does not guarantee that an explosion will not occur. Under extreme heat/pressure, it may not be able to safely release enough pressure to prevent the explosion. However, these devices still reduce the damage that occurs if an explosion does happen.
Proper ventilation allows for the oven to safely remove flammable vapors and gases before they become an issue. This may include the use of fans to actively remove vapors/gases and/or passive vents that allow them to escape.
Industrial heater shutoff devices are commonly connected to the temperature monitors, shutting down the heater if a specific temperature is surpassed. For industrial ovens, the digital control panel may also engage the shutoff device if it detects a problem with airflow or fan failure.
Automated control panels manage temperatures and safety equipment in heating systems. They pair with a variety of monitoring devices and control heat and activities within the system. Automation allows them to react immediately, significantly reducing user error and increasing responsiveness.
Selecting the right voltage for the application is important. Wattco engineers help to choose the voltage of your heating system based on its type, design, operating environment, and purpose.
Organized wiring with proper insulation and protective materials help to reduce the risks of electrocution and damage. As well, keeping the wiring clearly marked and well-organized increases the ease of maintenance and inspection.
Wattco custom manufactures convection heaters for ovens and other industrial heating applications. Our team of engineers works with you to select the right heater, design, and configuration for your project and budget.
Contact us today for industrial convection heater quotes and information.
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