Knowing which band heater to use in order to maximize your efficiency can be difficult. Heater life, start up time, process temperatures, durability, size, and cost all play an important role. While reviewing our guidelines on which band heater to choose for you particular needs, keep in mind that every application will have its own set of unique challenges.
Mica Band Heaters
Mica bands are inexpensive and easy to install. They derive their name from their electric insulator, “mica.” Mica bands are stocked in hundreds of sizes and can be custom manufactured in as little as one day. They have a tight sheath to barrel fit to avoid premature burnout. We do not recommend mica bands in high temperature or high watt density applications.
Ceramic Band Heaters
Ceramic bands provide long life and lower energy costs. They provide efficient heat transfer without being affected by surface irregularities or loose fit. They can be manufactured in as little as one day. Ceramic bands function well in high temperature applications.
MI Band Heaters
The MI (mineral insulated) band heater is a high performance heater. It can handle higher watt densities and temperatures. MI bands are the most efficient heater and are contamination-resistant. They are expensive heaters and have longer lead times.
Extruded Aluminum Band Heaters
Extruded aluminum bands are very rugged. They employ tubular elements snapped into an extruded aluminum case. They provide excellent heat transfer and have a very long life. Extruded aluminum bands cannot handle temperatures above 650° F.
Cast Band Heaters
Cast band heaters are very expensive but can last 10 years or longer. They are extremely rugged. Cast heaters operate in low watt densities but can work at higher temperature. Cast heaters have a very long lead time. They are available with cooling fins or tubes. Typically these heaters are cast in bronze or aluminum.
Mini Coiled Heaters
Mini coiled heaters provide worry-free heat for hot runner systems. These heaters are typically sealed to virtually eliminate failures due to contamination. Axial clamps provide easy installation. These heaters can handle higher temperatures.
Coil heaters are low profile heaters that are easy to install in the tight environment of multiple-gate molds. Heat is conducted from the entire 350 degree circumference (mica bands are not). Optional thermocouple provides temperature measurement capabilities.