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How to Choose the Right Silicone Rubber Heater

In an ongoing effort to support our customers, Bucan Electric Heating Devices offers information to help support the proper selection of our heaters for all applications. With this understanding, we must make clear that these suggestions are to be used to support all research and should not be the total information used to make your engineering decision.

When choosing a Silicone Rubber Heater, you should take into consideration several items. The first is the basic shape and size. For example you could choose a square or rectangle. With Silicone Rubber Heaters we are also able to make complicated shapes and geometry with little to no extra charge. So if your item is a hexagon or octagon we can cut the shape to match as long as the dimensions are provided. We can have holes and cut outs to avoid obstacles in your application. For the purpose of this article, we will proceed with a 6” x 6” square.

The next simple item will be the connection wire for your Silicone Rubber Heater. The two most common materials for the connection are teflon insulated or silicone insulated leads. The difference between the two materials is that teflon has a bit more protection against abrasion, and Silicone is a bit better for the purpose of moisture sealing the connections. You would also need to determine where you would like the connections to be made on the surface of the heater. We can easily place the connections in the center of the length or width. Other common locations would be in the corner of the heater or directly in the center of the heater. Please keep in mind that the connection will have a patch or “Bump” with the connections are located and will measure approx. 1” x 1” square and raise the area by about .156” thick. This area will also not be very flexible. To resolve the bump issue, we can add a cold tab outside of the working area to allow you to use the entire heated pad for your application. We will select 12” Teflon for this example.

Once you have completed the general shape and connections for the Silicone Rubber Heater you need to determine the best working power for the heater selected. This will be referred to the wattage and voltage. The common voltages to be applied are 12v, 24v, 120v and 240v. These will need to be verified for the ability to produce the heater requested. Most industrial heater applications have the voltage that they would like to use predetermined by the power available at the application site. If your machine is 120v this will likely be the voltage requested. For the purpose of this exercise, we will assume the request is 120v. Closely related to the voltage is the wattage that is requested. Silicone heaters are limited to the power that they can safely supply, so this is typically limited to 5 watts per square inch. We can go much higher in watt density with different constructions and temperature controls in the end application, but for this exercise, we will assume 5 watts per square inch is going to be the request. With these two items together, the heater would be sized to the following: 6” x 6” square, 180w 120v, 12” Teflon leads.

                                    

This is a very basic example of the selection process for a common Silicone Rubber Heater. Please understand that we have many additional options to attach, control and connect power to these heaters. Please contact our engineering for more information.