When to Use Heating Cords

When to Use Heating Cords

When it comes to choosing a heating product for a specific application, scientists are faced with an embarrassment of riches: fabric and solid-shell heating mantles; infrared (IR) heating lamps; electronic dry heater blocks; etc. There are countless forms of heating instrumentation to choose from. Heating cords are one of the simplest options available.

In this blog post, Glas-Col aims to explore when it is appropriate to use heating cords and to offer some insight into their working principles.

What are Heating Cords?

Heating cords are a type of resistance element widely used for small-scale surface heating experiments. They are generally comprised of a conductive ribbon encased in a high-performing insulator, like glass braiding and silicone rubber. This architecture imparts high flexibility and ensures that the cord can be wrapped around objects with small diameters.

They are closest in format to a heating mantle in that they directly contact objects and encompass them to some degree. However, mantles are designed to accommodate a specific container type and geometry, from Erlenmeyer flasks to standard beakers.

When Should You Use Heating Cords?

Wrap-around heating cords are ideal for elevating the temperature of columns, pipes, transfer lines, and valves. They are particularly useful in applications where the heating process must be observed, which is why they are most often used to heat substances/processes occurring in glassware.

Although some manufacturers suggest that heating cords can be used on conductive surfaces, this is largely dependent on the insulator capabilities. Therefore, heating cords are not usually suitable when it comes to heating metal pipes and containers. Likewise, they should only be used in low-moisture areas. Despite these limitations, heating cords are often preferred over alternative heating instruments for their versatility, rapid installation, and quick removal as required.

Heating Cords from Glas-Col

Glas-Col was founded on a base of expertise in laboratory heating and thermal processing. We have expanded our production capabilities significantly to include a range of high-temperature Cal-Gord heating cords. These wrap-around cables can heat tubes as narrow as ½” to operating temperatures of either 400°C or 600°C depending on the model. Each standard version is comprised of a 4-foot dual wire cord with an interlocking connector and a single-end termination. We also offer other varying lengths upon request.

If you would like any more information about Glas-Col heating products or need some more insight into our heating cord capabilities, simply contact a member of the Glas-Col team today.